Edwards on Clinton, Obama: We need a grown-up

Former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) on Tuesday took his rivals to task for their “squabbling” during the previous night’s debate in South Carolina, saying their “talking over each other” does nothing to solve the problems of the country.

At Monday night’s debate, Democratic front-runners Sens. Barack Obama (Ill.) and Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) repeatedly engaged each other in their sharpest, most contentious debate exchanges yet.

“I’m thinking, ‘I’m John Edwards, and I represent the grown-up wing of the Democratic Party,’ ” Edwards said. “At times like these we need a grown-up.”

The former senator, speaking to reporters on a conference call to announce the endorsement of the South Carolina Communications Workers of America locals, said the contention in the South Carolina debate gives him a chance to be heard, adding that there continues to be a “three-person race.”

Edwards also said he thinks his campaign is looking to expand its budget after last week having its best online fundraising period since he entered the race.

“We have plenty of money,” Edwards said. “Money is not and will not be the issue.”

The former senator refused to say whether he needed to win or come in second in Saturday’s South Carolina Democratic primary, saying only that there are still 47 states that have not voted and that he plans to stay in through the end.

“I’m not a political strategist,” Edwards said. “I’m running for the president of the United States.”