Not quite. Shortly after the debate, the Kerry campaign provided the media with a photograph that showed this was not the case.
Although it has been mentioned that Edwards and Cheney met before on at least two occasions, there has not been any footage anywhere of the second known meeting on January 7th, 2003.
Well... I found the video footage, and I took some screenshots!
If you watch 32:50 into the January 7th, 2003 edition of "The News Hour with Jim Lehrer" (RealPlayer), you will see Dick Cheney opening the Senate for the year, prior to the swearing in of new Senators.
In this video still, you see Cheney on the far left of the screen, facing the new members he is swearing in. On the right, you see John Edwards standing behind Elizabeth Dole, who is being sworn in.
As the camera pans to the right, you now see John Edwards with Bob Dole, who also escorted Elizabeth Dole to her swearing in ceremony.
After the swearing in ceremony, Cheney shook the hands of those attending the proceedings. Although it is not shown in the "News Hour" video, it is likely that the video from CSPAN2 shows Dick Cheney greeting everyone personally and shaking hands... including the hand of John Edwards.
*** Update: I called in to a researcher for the Kerry/Edwards campaign. They apparently have the video of this now, and have also discovered a third such meeting.
dailyKOS says: "Tim Russert is going around saying that Edwards and Cheney met backstage on his show, and shook hands and exchanged pleasantries."... Is Cheney a *four* time loser?! I think KOS is right. These are the kind of visible, eggregious lies that will drag down an otherwise acceptable performance for Cheney.
Looks like I am getting linked to from DailyKos, boingboing, and Oliver Willis this morning. (Says short prayer to the God of image hosting.) ***