by Jordan Zakarin
Just a day before a crucial Democratic presidential primary in his home state of North Carolina, former senator and Presidential candidate John Edwards finally made public his much contested and long-awaited endorsement, announcing his support for Garnier Fructis Fortifying Shampoo and Conditioner.
Speaking at a rally in his hometown of Chapel Hill, Edwards explained the decision while effusively praising the green-bottled product, which retails for approximately $4 per 13 oz. bottle. “Today I’m proud to stand behind this fine brand of two-in-one haircare product,” Edwards said. He continued, admitting that, “while it took a long time – longer than some of y’all in the media and with the campaigns may have liked – this decision, I feel, is the right one for America. With millions of Americans suffering from split ends, suffering under the oppression of humidity, we need a product that will fight for clean, smooth hair for all Americans.”
After months of calls from campaign surrogates and the candidates themselves, Edwards outlined a number of reasons why he threw his support behind Fructis. “I truly believe that this is the one haircare product that will help bridge the gaps that divide us and heal the wounds from years of petty fighting.”
Mentioning Fructis’s Active Fruit Concentrate a number of times, the 2004 Democratic Vice Presidential nominee appealed for unity in a deeply polarized country. “By combining both shampoo, which will clean the hair, and conditioner, which will strengthen and smooth every strand, Garnier Fructis is a true window into our future, where every man, woman and child has a chance to have healthy, voluminous and shiny hair.”
Political analysts, bloggers and hairdressers hurriedly began analyzing the impact of Edwards’ announcement, which came just 18 hours before voters from both his home state and Indiana went to the polls. Leading salontologist Meghan Overdeep remarked that Edwards’ choice was a good one, both because Fructis spares the hair from heaviness typical of some other leading shampoo and conditioners and because the demographic most likely to be influenced by Edwards’ decision is a crucial one in tomorrow’s contest.
“[These voters] they are relatively with it, not necessarily into the most expensive products, but willing to spend more than they would on White Rain for example,” Overdeep said, alluding to a cheaper, less effective shampoo and conditioner.
That comment points to one of the main questions that surrounded the speculation over Edwards’ endorsement. Still seeking a place on the national stage, perhaps as Attorney General if a Democrat is elected President, the former Senator most likely tried to steer clear of fancier, more expensive beauty products as he tries to shake the impression that he is more vain than your average self-obsessed politician. That was likely a large strike against Vidal Sassoon, who worked hard for the North Carolina power player’s backing.
More surprising, though, was Edwards’ ability to resist the urge to herbal.
Edwards was also quick to point out that this was his decision alone, and not one necessarily shared by Elizabeth, who has been more vocal than the senator himself since Edwards dropped out of the race after a poor showing in his native South Carolina. “Elizabeth is her own person, with strong opinions, and she’ll endorse if and when she’s ready. But I can tell you who she won’t be supporting, and that’s Aussie Mega,” he said, referring to the shampoo used by right wing author and columnist Anne Coulter, with whom Elizabeth Edwards had a televised argument last fall.