John Edwards has been charged with six felony and misdemeanour counts for using nearly $1 million from donors to keep his pregnant mistress a secret during the 2008 presidential election.
The trial was scheduled to start on January 30th, but his lawyers requested a delay of at least two months for an undisclosed medical condition.
Relatedly, if you were wondering what drove you to click on this story, Time magazine says that your brain makes you enjoy hating people like John Edwards.
“There is literal disgust and moral disgust, and the two overlap,” says Jonathan Haidt, professor of psychology at the University of Virginia. “Betrayal, hypocrisy, certain kinds of baseness trigger the brain’s moral response.”
Time and Haidt pointed to 1975 study in which subjects were asked to impose sentences on imaginary defendants, based only on a description of the imaginary crime and a photo of a person who was said to be the perpetrator. Mostly, attractive people got lighter sentences. Except in some circumstances:
“When the people in the scenarios used their attractiveness in their crimes, it switched the valence,” says Haidt. “They actually got a heavier sentence.”
UPDATE: 3:13PM: The extension was granted. Judge Catherine Eagles confirms she received a serious letter from John Edwards’ cardiologist. She expects another medical update by the end of February.