Showing posts with label David Vitter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label David Vitter. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


State Rep. John Bel Edwards beat Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter in Saturday's election, marking a change in the political landscape in the conservative South.

Edwards will be the only Democratic governor in the Deep South, where Republicans dominate politically.

You could almost have predicted the outcome of the race based on the candidates' election night parties. Sen. David Vitter was set up at a hotel near the airport, while John Bel Edwards lodged in the historic Monteleone Hotel in the French Quarter.
NPR's analogy of the choice of hotels for election parties as predictive of the outcome of the election is brilliant.  Goodbye, David Vitter.  Though Vitter will be in the US Senate till January 2016, he said he will not run for another term.  The final count showed Edwards with a 12 percent lead, 56-44.

We are so pleased John Bel Edwards won the election for governor by a large margin, and David Vitter was soundly trounced. Fear-mongering, lying, spying, and running a generally nasty campaign don't always win elections. Edwards will take on an enormous challenge in cleaning up the mess he inherits from Bobby Jindal, beginning with the $1.4 billion budget gap the governor and the Louisiana Legislature will need to address. We wish him the best.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015


Louisiana's own Bob Mann writes masterfully in Salon of the race for governor in Louisiana.
Then, a strange thing happened on Vitter’s stroll to the Louisiana governor’s mansion. In the state’s Oct. 24 primary (candidates of all parties run in a so-called “open primary”), Vitter nearly missed the Nov. 21 runoff election. He earned only 23 percent of the vote, trailing his lone Democratic opponent, state Rep. John Bel Edwards, by 17 points.

Last Friday, Edwards released an explosive new spot alleging that Vitter missed a Feb. 27, 2001, U.S. House vote honoring slain American soldiers while he waited on a phone call from a prostitute. It was the first time anyone had credibly suggested that Vitter’s prostitution habit in the late 1990s and early 2000s had influenced the performance of his public duties.
Gratingly self-righteous and mean is how I think of Vitter.  As governor of Louisiana, Vitter would be disaster following upon disaster after Jindal's plunder and destruction of state institutions and programs and failure to produce a "balanced" budget that was not based on smoke and mirrors.
Famously thin-skinned and possessed of a nasty temper, Vitter often threatens and bludgeons recalcitrant politicians and reluctant supporters into submission. In the U.S. Senate, he is widely disliked by members of both parties for his quick temper and grating self-righteousness.

Vitter seems to operate by the following, unstated principle: “I’d rather have your fear and respect than your affection.” Vitter would undoubtedly dispute Albert Camus, who famously observed, “Nothing is more despicable than respect based on fear.”
The photo above shows a screen shot from the video of the press conference with Vitter and his wife, Wendy, when he made his confession of a "serious sin" after his phone number was found on the call records of the DC madam, Deborah Jean Palfrey.  The expression on Wendy Vitter's face says volumes more than Vitter himself in his "confession".  Whether or not I decided to stay with my spouse after learning he had been unfaithful, I damned well would not be standing beside him when he makes his confession.

The problem for Vitter is that his approval rating is not much better than Obama’s. Then there is Bobby Jindal, whose tenure as governor has been a disaster. (He’s presided over a fiscal train wreck in recent years and is even less popular in his home state than the much-despised Obama.) Jindal’s travails have undermined the reputation of Republicans as sound stewards of the public till. Although Jindal and Vitter personally despise one another, many voters see them as the state GOP’s most prominent leaders. And because Vitter and Jindal have many of the same policy positions, Jindal is dragging Vitter down.  
While John Bel Edwards' policies are not necessarily the same as mine, he's as honorable man as an elected politician can be, and he's most surely the only kind of Democrat who can possibly be elected in Louisiana.  Not only did I vote for him twice, I sent Edwards two campaign contributions.  I put my money where my mouth is.
He’s never met Obama and has never served in Washington. A West Point graduate and former Army Ranger, he is not soft on crime. Instead, he is the son, grandson and brother of Louisiana sheriffs. The influential Louisiana Sheriffs Association not only endorsed Edwards, a bipartisan group of Republican and Democratic sheriffs cut a TV spot defending him against Vitter’s attacks. 

Edwards is generally conservative. His record with the NRA is impeccable. A devout Catholic, he is pro-life. He opposes Common Core. Vitter calls him a tax-and-spend liberal, but Vitter has indicated that he, too, will raise taxes on Louisiana business to fix the fiscal mess Jindal is leaving behind.
Ouch!  Still, I'll take what I can get, and I didn't even hold my nose when I voted, because the dreadful alternative is David Vitter as governor of Louisiana. 

Here's the Edwards campaign video.

Wham! Pow! Bam!

Deborah Jean Palfrey died of apparent suicide in 2008, after she was convicted of  "racketeering, using the mail for illegal purposes, and money laundering" and faced a sentence of five or six years in prison.

Sunday, November 8, 2015


If you'd like to begin the long process to lift the state out of the abyss in which the Jindal maladministration plunged us, John Bel Edwards is your candidate.

Early voting continues tomorrow, Monday, November 8, 2015 through Saturday, November 14, 2015. If you are registered to vote in Louisiana, please go to your polling place and vote for John Bel Edwards.

If you approve of the last 8 years of governance by plunder and destruction of Louisiana institutions and programs by Bobby Jindal, then vote for David Vitter for more of the same.

Saturday, October 17, 2015


Louisiana Tech University hosted a debate among the four major candidates for governor Thursday night — one of the few televised debates Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter has agreed to participate in ahead of the Oct. 24 election.

But there were no students in the crowd to see it — no crowd at all, actually. The debate had no live audience, a point that Vitter’s opponents, Democratic state Rep. John Bel Edwards and Republicans Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne and Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, each labeled “ridiculous” and “disturbing.”
Following the debate, Angelle, Edwards and Dardenne met with reporters, but Vitter did not.

All three speculated that Vitter’s campaign was behind the lack of live audience and media viewing room.
Actually, I would like to move on from the discussion of the prostitution scandal, which the great majority of the voters in the state already know about, and address the many other reasons why Vitter would be a disaster as governor, but he himself continues to emphasize “family values” in his public appearances. During the debate, Vitter said he believes in “faith, family, education, and hard work”, thus reminding people of his “serious sin” against his family.

The present governor, Bobby Jindal, is possibly the least accessible and transparent in the history of the state. Will Vitter's fear of questions and comments about his past lead him to isolate himself from the media and the citizens of Louisiana in the same way as Jindal? Louisiana does not need another governor in hiding.

Monday, September 28, 2015


Senator David Vitter, candidate for governor of Louisiana, refuses to debate the other candidates in the race.  He refuses to answer questions from the survey by United Way.  Why is he afraid?  We know who Vitter is against from the vicious TV ads his supporters run against his fellow Republicans in the campaign, but why does he refuse to accept the challenge to stand up with the other candidates and debate policies?  Why no response to the United Way survey?  If John Bel Edwards (D) and Vitter are in the runoff after the primary, Vitter supporters will run vicious ads against Edwards.  We know who Vitter's against, but what does he stand for?  Vitter is in the fray, not above it, and his refusal to engage and answer questions smacks of arrogance and a lack of transparency.  Haven't we had enough here in Louisiana?

Survey results from United Way.

H/T to Bob Mann at Something Like the Truth.

Friday, March 28, 2014


Fox News and friends, including Sen David Vitter (R-LA), are freaking out over President Obama's extension by a few days of the deadline for the sign-up period for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. Once again, Republicans demonstrate signs of impaired memory about the rollout of Medicare Part D under President George W Bush.

Below is the text of my letter to Sen David Vitter in response to his recent email suggesting that I send him my ideas on Obamacare.

Dear Sen. Vitter,

Your recent email on Obamacare is nothing but a load of malarkey.  If you see those words as acceptable, you must really think I'm stupid.  After a bad start, Obamacare is doing exactly what it's supposed to be doing.  Perhaps your memory is not entirely clear about the rocky beginning and the extension of the deadline in the rollout of Medicare Part D under President George W. Bush.
'In May of 2006, just days before the end of open enrollment, President Bush took administrative action to waive “penalty fees for very low-income seniors and people with disabilities who sign up late” and allowed “the same impoverished beneficiaries to sign up for Medicare drug coverage until Dec. 31.”

“In other words, you can apply after May 15th without penalty,” Bush told seniors during an event in Florida. “And that’s important for low-income seniors to understand.”
Republicans seem to have selective memory recall about the periods in recent history when they were running the show.  Why not spend your time and our tax dollars doing something useful, such as helping the uninsured in Louisiana obtain health insurance, rather than repeatedly harping on the evils of the Obama administration?  The constant reiteration of the same old, same old is beyond tiresome.

Thank you for your attention.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Many of you have already heard that Senator David Vitter will run for governor of the State of Louisiana. Oh joy! Are we lucky, or what? I choose, "Or what?" If you know me at all, you know I do not want David Vitter to be my governor.
State Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party, released a scathing statement Tuesday about Vitter’s gubernatorial bid. Peterson, D-New Orleans, called Vitter an obstructionist and a failure. She questioned his ability to work across political lines. She assigned him a .000 batting average for the success of his legislation last year. What she didn’t mention was his sex scandal.
 Pretty much my opinion, too, and smart of Carter not to mention the scandal.

I expect that few voters in Louisiana are unaware of Vitter's association with a prostitution ring that continues to dog him 7 years later, and the opposition will very likely use against him what Vitter himself called a "serious sin". I hope most Democrats are as smart as Karen Carter and do not bring up the matter repeatedly, thus appearing to pile on, with the result that Vitter will get sympathy votes. He was reelected senator by a landslide, so the connection with the prostitution ring is not likely to sway voters in the election for governor one way or another.  And here I am talking about it, but I hope not to in the future.

With Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne and state Treasurer John Kennedy, both Republicans, considering a run, either would be more acceptable to me than Vitter, with Dardenne as my preference between the two.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


[Sen.] Reid, D-Nev., said Vitter and other Republicans must stop trying to prevent the Affordable Care Act from being implemented and that they need to “grow up” and “stop denying reality.”

Dear Sen. Vitter (R):

Please stop playing the fool in the US Senate. You are an embarrassment.


Disloyal Constituent

U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-Baton Rouge, also announced that he will support a House version of Vitter’s Obamacare proposal.
Dear Rep: Cassidy (R):

Do not make the mistake of asking me for a contribution to your campaign for the US Senate. One Louisiana senator acting the fool is one too many.


Disloyal Constituent

Friday, February 22, 2013


President Barack H. Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC  20500

Dear President Obama:

Last Thursday, the Senate voted to continue its consideration of your nomination of former Senator Chuck Hagel to serve as our nation’s next Secretary of Defense.  While we respect Senator Hagel’s honorable military service, in the interest of national security, we respectfully request that you withdraw his nomination.

It would be unprecedented for a Secretary of Defense to take office without the broad base of bipartisan support and confidence needed to serve effectively in this critical position.  Over the last half-century, no Secretary of Defense has been confirmed and taken office with more than three Senators voting against him.  Further, in the history of this position, none has ever been confirmed with more than 11 opposing votes.  The occupant of this critical office should be someone whose candidacy is neither controversial nor divisive.

In contrast, in 2011, you nominated Leon Panetta, who was confirmed by the Senate with unanimous support.  His Pentagon tenure has been a huge success, due in part to the high degree of trust and confidence that Senators on both sides of the aisle have placed in him.  The next Secretary of Defense should have a similar level of broad-based bipartisan support and confidence in order to succeed at a time when the Department of Defense faces monumental challenges, including Iran’s relentless drive to obtain nuclear weapons, a heightened threat of nuclear attack from North Korea, potentially deep budget cuts, a strategic pivot to the Asia-Pacific region, military operations in Afghanistan, the ongoing Global War on Terror, the continued slaughter of Syrian civilians at the hands of their own government, and other aftermath of the Arab Spring.

Likewise, Senator Hagel’s performance at his confirmation hearing was deeply concerning, leading to serious doubts about his basic competence to meet the substantial demands of the office.  While Senator Hagel’s erratic record and myriad conversions on key national security issues are troubling enough, his statements regarding Iran were disconcerting.  More than once during the hearing, he proclaimed the legitimacy of the current regime in Tehran, which has violently repressed its own citizens, rigged recent elections, provided material support for terrorism, and denied the Holocaust.

Regarding U.S. policy on Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, Senator Hagel displayed a seeming ambivalence about whether containment or prevention is the best approach, which gives us great concern.  Any sound strategy on Iran must be underpinned by the highly credible threat of U.S. military force, and there is broad bipartisan agreement on that point.  If Senator Hagel becomes Secretary of Defense, the military option will have near zero credibility.  This sends a dangerous message to the regime in Tehran, as it seeks to obtain the means necessary to harm both the United States and Israel.

We have concluded that Senator Hagel is not the right candidate to hold the office of Secretary of Defense, and we respectfully request that you withdraw his nomination.  Thank you for your consideration.

The letter is signed by Sens. John Cornyn (R-Tex.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), David Vitter (R-La.), Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Dan Coats (R-Ind.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.).
From the Washington post.

I see my senator, David Vitter (R-LA), signed the letter.  I'm disappointed but not surprised.  Would the senators who signed have been satisfied if Sen Hagel had said we should attack Iran forthwith?  The Obama administration ended our involvement in one war not so very long ago and is in the process of extricating our military from another war, but the grandstanding senators (you know who you are) and their followers seemingly can't allow the country a breather from military conflict.  No doubt Hagel's "erratic record and myriad conversions" include his public disapproval of George Bush's handling of the Iraq War, but he was hardly the lone supporter of the war who turned sour on the enterprise as the situation in Iraq went bad, and more people became convinced that there never were WMD in Iraq, nor was Saddam even close to having nuclear weapon capability.

Chuck Hagel would not have been my first choice as Secretary of Defense, but, if I were a member of the Senate, I'd vote to confirm him without hesitation.  Republicans eating their own for no good reason that I can fathom is a sorry spectacle.  Shame on you, senators. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Senator Marco Rubio (R - FL), who will give the official Republican response to President Obama's State of the Union speech tonight, voted against the Expanded Violence Against Women Act today.
The 22 Republicans who voted against it were:

Sens. John Barrasso (WY)

Roy Blunt (MO)

John Boozman (AR)

Tom Coburn (OK)

John Cornyn (TX)

Ted Cruz (TX)

Mike Enzi (WY)

Lindsey Graham (SC)

Chuck Grassley (IA)

Orrin Hatch (UT)

James Inhofe (OK)

Mike Johanns (NE)

Ron Johnson (WI)

Mike Lee (UT)

Mitch McConnell (KY)

Rand Paul (KY)

Jim Risch (ID)

Pat Roberts (KS)

Marco Rubio (FL)

Tim Scott (SC)

Jeff Sessions (AL)

John Thune (SD).
I'm pleased Senator David Vitter (R - LA) was not among the Republicans who voted against the bill.  Women, especially, and men, too, take note of the names of the senators who voted against the bill.   The expanded bill offers protection to "gays, undocumented immigrants and Native American women who suffer from domestic abuse."