WASHINGTON – Democratic vice presidential contender John Edwards (search) may not know how much milk costs in New Mexico, but he's got a handle on his local grocery prices.
Edwards has promoted himself as the down-to-earth candidate who can relate to the struggles of working families, while trying to portray Vice President Dick Cheney (search) as out of touch.
Broadcaster Don Imus (search) put those claims to the test Thursday, quizzing the North Carolina Democrat about the costs of a gallon of milk and six-pack of beer in Albuquerque, N.M.
"You were just in Albuquerque, do you know?" I saying, "I haven't bought a six-pack of beer in years, so I don't know."
The father of a 4-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter was more confident about milk.
"I know about what it costs. I think a half gallon of milk costs about $2.30, $2.40," he said. "Is that right?"
A half gallon of non-name brand whole milk sells for $2.29 at the Safeway grocery store in Edwards' upscale Georgetown neighborhood in Washington. It's $2.09 at Smith's Food & Drug Centers in Albuquerque.
Edwards was on the syndicated radio show with John Kerry (search), who told Imus that he picked Edwards as his running mate in part because "I wanted somebody with young kids who knows what families face."
All four candidates — President Bush, Kerry, Edwards and Cheney — are millionaires. Edwards, the son of a two mill workers, won $150 million worth of verdicts or settlements as a trial lawyer in the 1990s.