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Affair Shocker: John Edwards' Ex-Mistress Spills About Cheating Scandal That Ended His Presidential Dreams

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Feb. 22 2024, Published 5:00 p.m. ET

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It's been over 15 years since John Edwards' affair was exposed — and Jake Tapper is reopening the can of worms, interviewing his former mistress, Rielle Hunter, who is spilling all the details about the extramarital activities that ruined his career and his "good guy" persona, RadarOnline.com has learned.

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Edwards and Hunter began a whirlwind affair behind his dying wife's back, which ended with the ex-senator fathering her child. Now, Hunter is telling all, revealing their first meeting and how Edwards invited her up to his hotel room.

The interview is for the upcoming episode of Tapper's United States of Scandal.

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In a teaser of Sunday's episode obtained by PEOPLE, Tapper asked Hunter, who is now 59, about how she first came to know Edwards. She said it was a chance encounter that changed their lives forever.

“He was in a business meeting. I was with my friend. We were at a table and John Edwards was behind her. And he kept looking at me as though he knew me as well," Hunter recalled.

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“And then we got up and left and when we were standing on the corner, John Edwards turned the corner and saw me there,” she continued. “And he, like, literally almost jumped into my arms. And my response — what came out of my mouth was, ‘You’re so hot.’”

When Tapper asked, "And what did he say back?” Hunter responded in Edwards’ voice, “Why, thank you.”

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Hunter claimed she ended up offering to "help" the politician, which got her an invite to his hotel room.

“So you went to his room?” Tapper inquired, to which she confirmed. Hunter then claimed she was unaware that their vibe was sexual, but the CNN star wasn't buying it.

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“You didn’t?” Tapper questioned her. “Because it sounds like there was an attraction. You said, ‘You’re so hot.’ I mean that's inherently a little sexual.”

“I know, I know, I know,” Hunter replied, concluding the episode preview.

United States of Scandal airs on CNN Sunday at 9 PM ET.

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For those unaware, Edwards became a political pariah after the news of his affair broke. As CNN explained, he hawked himself as “a crusading trial attorney and family man” who made voters believe he was the “picture-perfect presidential candidate."

All that changed when his years-long fling made headlines.

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Not only did the affair crush his political dreams, but Edwards was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2011 on six felony charges of violating several federal campaign contribution laws to allegedly cover up an extramarital affair.

He was not convicted of any crime after the judge declared a mistrial. His wife, Elizabeth, died from cancer in 2010, three years after his relationship with Hunter was uncovered.

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At the time of her death, Elizabeth had released a book discussing how she struggled to forgive Edwards when she learned of his extramarital affair. She obtained a legal separation when she discovered he had fathered Hunter's child.

Elizabeth had every intention of divorcing Edwards but lost her battle with cancer before she could file.

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