August 29th, 2010
02:02 AM ET
4 years ago

Vitter, Melancon win party nominations in Louisiana

Louisiana Sen. David Vitter won the Republican Party’s nomination for Senate on Saturday.
Louisiana Sen. David Vitter won the Republican Party’s nomination for Senate on Saturday.

(CNN) - Republican Sen. David Vitter and Democratic Rep. Charlie Melancon easily coasted to victory Saturday in the Louisiana Senate primary, setting up a November race between the conservative senator and the Blue Dog Democrat congressman.

Vitter, in his first appearance on the ballot since a 2007 scandal, overwhelmed two Republican challengers.

The Associated Press showed Vitter winning 87 percent of the vote, 80 points ahead of his nearest opponent, former State Supreme Court justice Chet Traylor.

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Filed under: 2010 • Charlie Melancon • David Vitter • Louisiana
August 13th, 2010
08:01 PM ET
4 years ago

In new ad, Louisiana dem slams opponents 'serious sin'

 Louisiana Democratic Rep. Charlie Melancon is out Friday with a biting new ad that attacks incumbent Republican Senator David Vitter's 'sins.'
Louisiana Democratic Rep. Charlie Melancon is out Friday with a biting new ad that attacks incumbent Republican Senator David Vitter's 'sins.'

(CNN) – Louisiana Democratic Rep. Charlie Melancon is out Friday with a biting new ad that attacks incumbent Republican Senator David Vitter's 'sins,' as well as his voting record on women's issues.

The 30-second ad, entitled 'The Worst,' features a woman's voice combined with images of Vitter and his wife leaving a July 2007 press conference where Vitter admitted to having an extramarital affair and contacting an escort service.

The narrator says, "We know how David Vitter handled his serious sin."

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Filed under: 2010 • Charlie Melancon • David Vitter
July 17th, 2010
01:14 PM ET
4 years ago

Vitter sorry for Maddow comment

Vitter is apologizing for a comment poking run at Rachel Maddow.
Vitter is apologizing for a comment poking run at Rachel Maddow.

(Updated with additional context)

(CNN) – Republican Sen. David Vitter apologized to MSNBC host Rachel Maddow Friday after jesting on a radio program that she only looked like a woman “a long time ago.”

“Regarding my remark during a radio conversation today, I apologize,” Vitter wrote in a letter to Maddow. “The hosts made their comment and I obviously chimed in. While we do not usually agree on the issues, I do not think you deserved that comment.”

Vitter’s comments came during an appearance on Rush Radio 99.5 in New Orleans Friday morning, during which the radio hosts joked about a high school photo of Maddow with long blond hair. The MSNBC host currently has short brown hair.

“Must have been a long time ago,” Vitter joked when the hosts said the photo portrays Maddow as “looking like a woman.”

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Filed under: David Vitter • Louisiana • Popular Posts
July 13th, 2010
03:46 PM ET
4 years ago

Vitter's 'birther' comments draw heat

Vitter has run into some political stumbling blocks.
Vitter has run into some political stumbling blocks.

(CNN) – Louisiana Sen. David Vitter, already bruised politically for failing to adequately explain why he continued to employ a staffer who was arrested for threatening to stab his girlfriend, is now facing heat over his apparent support of investigations into President Barack Obama's place of birth.

"I personally don't have standing to bring litigation in court," Vitter told voters in Metairie, Louisiana Sunday. "But I support conservative legal organizations and others who would bring that to court. I think that is the valid and most possibly effective grounds to do it."

Video of Vitter's remarks were posted by the liberal web site Talking Points Memo on Monday.

When the issue of the president's birthplace first emerged during the 2008 presidential election, the Obama campaign released the then-senator's birth certificate showing that he was born in Hawaii. In December 2008, after Obama was elected, the U.S. Supreme Court turned down an emergency appeal from a New Jersey man claiming Obama was ineligible to serve as president. Since then, the White House has called doubts from so-called "birthers" that Obama was born in the state of Hawaii "fictional nonsense."

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Filed under: David Vitter • Popular Posts
July 12th, 2010
05:57 PM ET
4 years ago

After tumultuous first term, Vitter draws a primary challenge

Sen. David Vitter now faces a credible threat in the Louisiana GOP primary.
Sen. David Vitter now faces a credible threat in the Louisiana GOP primary.

Washington (CNN) - Scandal plagued Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter has drawn a last minute primary challenger, who points, in part, to Vitter’s series of first-term controversies as a reason for jumping in the race.

Retired State Supreme Court Justice Chet Traylor, who filed his candidacy on Friday, told CNN that while he wouldn't comment directly on Vitter's problems, "we wouldn't be in this position if we had a senator who could get results."

Traylor went further in an interview with ABC News published Monday, saying he was particularly concerned about reports that a Vitter aide who had repeated brushes with the law, including an arrest for attacking an ex-girlfriend with a knife, was allowed to maintain employment in Vitter's office. The aide has since resigned.

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Filed under: 2010 • David Vitter • Louisiana
May 30th, 2010
12:06 PM ET
4 years ago

Not rational to give up on offshore drilling, Vitter says

Sen. David Vitter, R-Louisiana, likened opposing offshore drilling because of the Gulf oil spill to opposing traveling by airplane after every plane crash.
Sen. David Vitter, R-Louisiana, likened opposing offshore drilling because of the Gulf oil spill to opposing traveling by airplane after every plane crash.

Washington (CNN) - A Republican senator from the state so far the hardest hit by the Gulf oil spill said Sunday that the environmental catastrophe was not a reason to put a stop to all domestic offshore oil drilling.

"By the same token, after every plane crash, you and I should both oppose plane travel," Sen. David Vitter, R-Louisiana, told CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley on CNN's State of the Union. "I don't think that is rational."

Watch: Vitter on the oil spill

Vitter added that it was necessary to determine what went wrong in the sequence of events that led up to the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig on April 20 which caused the largest oil spill in U.S. history.

"We've going to need a lot of new technology and mandates and procedures," Vitter told Crowley, "And I will be a big part of that effort.

"But to jump from there to say: No domestic offshore drilling, no domestic production of oil and gas . . . I think is a crazy leap quite frankly."
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May 22nd, 2010
11:10 AM ET
4 years ago

Louisiana Republican sounds off on oil spill, energy policy


Washington (CNN) - In this week's GOP Internet and radio address, Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter discusses the needs of coastal communities dealing with the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Vitter also touches on new legislation intended to deal with similar events in the future and on energy policy.

(Read Vitter's full remarks after the jump)

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Filed under: David Vitter • GOP • Louisiana
October 15th, 2009
01:27 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama's visit to New Orleans drawing some criticism

(CNN) – President Barack Obama, who as a candidate lambasted the federal government for its response to Hurricane Katrina, is visiting New Orleans, Louisiana, as president for the first time Thursday, and is attracting some criticism of his own.

Four years after Hurricane Katrina, evidence of the storm's devastation still linger. Some 60,000 properties in New Orleans are still abandoned, and there are still 1,500 people in Louisiana living in temporary housing, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The Army Corps of Engineers is only a third of the way through a $15 billion system to provide 100-year flood protection for the city.

However, the agency says 76 disputed projects in Louisiana have been resolved since Obama took office, and more than $1.4 billion in aid has been sent to Louisiana, along with more than $160 million to Mississippi. Still, the length and nature of Obama's visit Thursday is drawing some ire.

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Filed under: David Vitter • New Orleans • President Obama
August 31st, 2009
11:35 AM ET
4 years ago

Honore dismisses talk of Senate run

Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honore denied a Senate bid.
Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honore denied a Senate bid.

(CNN) – The general who led military relief efforts in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina is denying a report that he may challenge Louisiana Sen. David Vitter in 2010, calling it "speculation and rumors" Sunday.

Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honore, now a CNN emergency preparedness analyst, said he is moving back to his home state. But "No one's talking to me about running for Senate," Honore said.

"That is a serious rumor that's got started that's created a lot of buzz," said Honore, who left the Army in 2008. But he said he has never declared a party affiliation, and any talk of a Senate run is "all about speculation and rumors."

Honore is best known for taking over a widely criticized relief effort after Katrina flooded most of New Orleans in August 2005. The city's mayor, Ray Nagin, famously described the cigar-chomping three-star general as a "John Wayne dude" who could "get some stuff done."

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Filed under: David Vitter • Louisiana
August 27th, 2009
11:15 AM ET
5 years ago

Melancon makes Vitter challenge official

Melancon officially entered the race in a Web video released Thursday.
Melancon officially entered the race in a Web video released Thursday.

(CNN) – In a highly-expected move, Democratic Rep. Charlie Melancon said Thursday that he will enter the race to take on Republican Sen. David Vitter in the Louisiana Senate race next year.

"Today, I'm announcing my candidacy for the U.S. Senate to replace David Vitter, because Louisiana deserves better," said the three-term congressman in a video message sent to supporters.

Vitter has been focusing his fire on Melancon for months, including a Web ad earlier this summer that took a swipe at the congressman for fundraising in the Northeast, and attempted to tie him to President Obama.

"It didn't take long for President Obama and his liberal friends to throw their support behind David's opponent, Charlie Melancon," said the incumbent in a fundraising appeal to his own supporters, slamming Melancon for "(flying) up to Martha's Vinyard to collect campaign cash from Obama's wealthiest supporters at cocktail parties in Massachusetts."

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Filed under: David Vitter
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