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John Edwards' mistress speaks out

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Rielle Hunter, the mistress of John Edwards, gave a lengthy interview to GQ, breaking her long silence regarding her affair with the politician and father to her young daughter, Frances. “I know he loves me,” she told the magazine. “I have never had any doubt at all about that. We love each other very much. And that hasn’t changed, and I believe that will be till death do us part. The love doesn’t go away. It’s unconditional.”

Hunter, who was hired as the politician’s videographer in 2008, said she slept with Edwards the night she first met him in 2006: “I had never experienced anything like what was flowing between us. I sat on the other side of the room. I wouldn’t go near him…It was just this, this magnetic force field like I had never experienced. It terrified me. Absolutely terrified  me.”

In the interview, Hunter — who denies that Edwards has proposed to her — also discusses the paternity scandal, and the plan for Andrew Young to claim he was the father of Frances. Edwards’ mistress also talks about the politician’s wife, Elizabeth, whom she feels “such compassion” for. “Infidelity doesn’t happen in healthy marriages. The break in the marriage happens before the infidelity. And that break happened, you know, two-and-a-half decades before I got there. So the home was wrecked already. I was not the Home Wrecker.”

As for the public’s perception of her? “I’m not a predator, I’m not a gold digger, I’m not the stalker,” she told GQ, insisting that Edwards has redeemed himself. “Everyone talks about how Johnny has fallen from grace. In reality he’s fallen to grace. He is integrated. He is living a life of truth. He has grown in awareness and humility. He had all these things within him, but they weren’t the guiding, leading principles of his life. Now they are.”

Read more: Rielle Hunter upset about racy ‘GQ’ photos, says Barbara Walters