John Edwards has admitted that Rielle Hunter’s child, Francis Quinn, is his own. It’s not a shocking admission. Just another lie in the morass of lies that has consumed Edwards’ life.

In a statement released to NBC News, Edwards said it was “wrong” for him to have denied paternity and that “hopefully one day, when [Francis Quinn] understands, she will forgive me.” He also said that he’s been able to spend time with his daughter over the last year and hopes to continue doing so in peace.

This is the final nail in the coffin of Edwards’ political career. In August 2008, he told ABC’s Bob Woodruff that allegations of his fathering the child were “absolutely not true.” He then feigned interest in a paternity test when, most likely, he had coordinated with Hunter to have her refuse a test. There is now no reason for even his closest political allies to put any stock in what he says.

The timing is also noteworthy, with Edwards’ former aide, Andrew Young, set to release his tell-all exposé in early February. For a while, Edwards convinced Young to claim paternity of the child to cover the former North Carolina senator’s indiscretions.

It’s alarming how close this man came to the Oval Office. It’s equally alarming how slothful the press was in reporting this story. A trashy tabloid using unnamed sources outscooped them all. For shame.

Cross-posted on AmSpecBlog.