Chet Edwards at Democratic Convention | KERA News

Chet Edwards at Democratic Convention

Dallas, TX – The political profile of Texas Congressman Chet Edwards seems to be soaring since he made Barack Obama's shortlist for Vice President. Over the weekend the Obama campaign asked him to make a prime-time speech tonight at the Democratic convention. Edwards talked to KERA's Shelley Kofler about his new-found visibility.

Like most Congressional representatives, Chet Edwards of Waco wasn't widely known outside his district and the halls of Congress. But he admits things have changed.

Edwards: There have been some rumors in Washington about my having made the VP shortlist puts me in a position to be considered for a cabinet post. But that's putting the cart before the horse because Senator Obama has to get elected first, and he would have to see who he wants to appoint to the cabinet.

Washington pundits have suggested that if Obama's elected, Edwards might be a candidate to head the Department of Veterans Affairs. He's a moderate Democrat who wins in a Republican district, chairs a veterans subcommittee and has expertise on military and national security issues.

Tonight on the convention stage he'll talk about government's responsibility to support military families. John McCain will be one of his topics.

Edwards: His voting record as a senator in Washington has not been one that has been positive regarding improving veterans' health care and benefits. And I think it will be surprising to many Americans to hear that.

Edwards is scheduled to speak for four minutes around 9 p.m. Texas time. But he follows two notoriously long-winded orators-Vice Presidential Candidate Joe Biden and Former President Bill Clinton. So Edwards may end up speaking much later.