Everyone in Louisiana knows that his phone number appeared on the call list of the D.C. Madam. Voters also have heard about the allegations that he had a relationship with a New Orleans prostitute. In fact, new elements of the story have been unveiled in this election cycle by investigative reporter Jason Berry at www.TheAmericanZombie.com
In response, the Senator only admitted to a “serious sin” without providing any more information. After his behavior with prostitutes was highlighted in a devastating commercial from his opponent, John Bel Edwards, Vitter decided to focus on “forgiveness” in a response commercial. He continued the “forgiveness” theme in his new commercial with the Duck Commander Willie Robertson.
While he told voters that he “failed” his family, he never told us how, so the issue has never gone away. If Vitter would have come clean years ago, the scandal would have been largely forgotten by this point. Instead, it is a major reason why so many voters are hesitant to support him in the Governor’s race.
The Senator is also known as a political loner who does not have good relations with colleagues. For example, when he served in the Louisiana legislature, he was despised by fellow legislators. In fact, some of those hard feelings are still on display in this election. It is worth noting that the State Senate Republican delegation has not endorsed Vitter in the Governor’s race. The leader of the delegation is State Senator Danny Martiny (R-Metairie), one of the individuals targeted by a Vitter investigator in the infamous Royal Blend coffee house spying incident the day before the primary election. Martiny said that being the target of spying “didn’t sit real well with me.”
Another person at the coffee house was Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand, a Republican. He also did not enjoy being recorded by the bumbling investigator and has subsequently appeared in a commercial for a political action committee opposing Vitter. In the spot, Normand claims that Vitter only cares about himself and is not the candidate who will “be able to lead Louisiana.”
In the primary election, Vitter ignored Edwards and focused his political fire on his fellow Republican candidates; Scott Angelle and Jay Dardenne. A political action committee supporting Vitter mercilessly blasted Angelle and Dardenne on a variety of issues. After the bruising primary concluded, it should come as no surprise that the victims of the attacks would not have kind feelings toward Vitter. Thus, Dardenne has now endorsed John Bel Edwards and Angelle has remained conspicuously silent.
Vitter also has a poor relationship with another Louisiana Republican, Governor Bobby Jindal. Ironically, in the last debate, Edwards pointed out that Vitter endorsed Jindal three times. In 2011, Vitter made a very public statement “strongly endorsing” Jindal saying that the Governor was “honest and competent.” Edwards has called Vitter a “Jindal clone.” If he is successful in the final days of the campaign in making this connection it could prove very damaging to Vitter.
The evidence is all included in the latest UNO poll. The most unpopular political figure in Louisiana is Governor Bobby Jindal with an approval rating of only 20% and a disapproval rating of 70%. Jindal is toxic to anyone associated with him and it is clear that Vitter will do everything possible to distance himself from the Governor in the waning days of the campaign.
Even more startling is that the UNO poll has Vitter trailing Edwards by 22%. It remains to be seen whether Vitter can recover before Election Day as a Verne Kennedy poll has indicating some closing. Of course, the Senator will have more money in the final week to get out the vote and will continue his negative television commercials linking Edwards to President Barack Obama.
He will also continue to showcase his endorsement from the Duck Commander Willie Robertson. However, Robertson endorsed Bobby Jindal for President, so his judgment can certainly be questioned.
The bigger question is why Senator Vitter is asking a reality TV star for an endorsement? We have serious problems plaguing Louisiana due to Jindal’s two terms of neglect and abandonment. Instead of endorsement spots and attack commercials, it would be much better for Senator Vitter to tell voters how he will fix the immense problems in our state that have only become worse in the last eight years.
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