Elizabeth Edwards spoke to guests at the 2008 Personal Democracy Forum about how the internet is influencing the world of politics. But it was husband John that later stole the show with his surprise (even to him) appearance.

They had to chime into the forum via the web, thanks to the weather. Elizabeth was slated for a real life chat with guests on day one of the event before thunderstorms kept her flight grounded.

To the backdrop of the Edwards’ lovely living room and the occasional meandering of passers-by in the distance, Elizabeth discussed how the internet helped both her husband’s campaign and those of other candidates, but emphasized her belief that the potential the internet offers still hasn’t been fully tapped into.

Perhaps the most poignant comment to that end however was offered by John, grocery bag in hand and all. He says the internet is, “The only reason Barack Obama isn’t taking public financing,” citing the fundraising advantages it’s given him over “Bush.” Wait, over who? The ever-attentive Elizabeth quickly called out the blunder to a chuckling applause.  Elizabeth had graciously heeded moderator Andrew Rasiej’s enthusiastic plea to get John on the webcam the second he walked in.

Kudos are in order for the PdF team, which feverishly scrambled to reshuffle speakers and arrange to have Elizabeth – and as it turned out, John (totally a stroke of good fortune) – join the forum live when it was confirmed she wouldn't make it in-person. Rumor has it that PdF had to find someone to rush a cam-equipped Mac to the Edwards’ household to make it happen. Skype held up remarkably well. Despite a few rough patches with the audio, Rasiej only had to hang-up and call back once.