August 31st, 2009
11:35 AM ET
12 years ago

Honore dismisses talk of Senate run

[cnn-photo-caption image=
caption="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."

A Louisiana political Web site reported last week that he was "seriously considering" a Republican primary challenge to Vitter, a first-term Republican who was ensnared in a Washington sex scandal in 2007. Honore said he had received more than 100 e-mails in response to that report, but no news outlet asked him whether it was true before CNN contacted him Sunday.

"That ought to scare the hell out of people in this country," said Honore, who once called a reporter "stuck on stupid" during a nationally televised news conference.

Honore said he plans to continue working as a disaster preparedness consultant, raise money for the Red Cross and teach once he returns to his home state. But he said he also will keep a "close watch" on efforts to rebuild the storm-ravaged Gulf Coast "as a private citizen."

"As of this time, I'm not running for any political office," he said.

Filed under: David Vitter • Louisiana
soundoff (86 Responses)
  1. d1120

    Yeah, 'cuz Nagin sure couldn't get anything done...all he wanted to do was TALK.

    August 31, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  2. Gary

    We need more people in office who have had successful careers in business, medicine, technology and the military.....I'm fed up with career politicians whose lifetime acheivements amount to taking bribes from special interest groups.....We need term limits on the Senate and the House. I hope Honore runs for office.

    August 31, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  3. a progressive liberal and proud of it

    I think a man like this could do as much good in political service to his country as he has in military service to his country.

    August 31, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  4. single mom

    Can anyone explain how the mayor of New Orleans and the governor of Louisiana didn't take care of their people, but the President gets blamed? Other states, Florida and Texas in particular, get clobbered all the time from hurricanes. But they don't seem to be whining about it and blaming the federal government for not taking care of them. They get out of the way if necessary, hunker down, get ready and take care of things when it's over.
    Why on earth weren't New Orleans and Louisiana able to do the same thing?

    August 31, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  5. Henk Pouderoyen

    Honore is LA's best shot at getting something done. Easy to critize a past Republican govt for its ills, but let's not forget that N.O. was a cluster for many years prior to this storm.... As another commentary says; when the storm hit, many did not wish to leave, the major did nor have bus drivers, locals looted, trashed a stadium, etc. Little self-reflection in NOLA. 65%+ of its population lived on welfare and when it came to rebuilding many of the local were whining from govt-supplied mobile homes from a nearby state. Sorry people, but it takes a work ethic to get yourself in shape, a state cannot be successful on jazz and beignets alone...!

    August 31, 2009 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  6. Get a Life !!

    It is time that the residents of NOLA helped themselves instead of sitting back doing nothing except asking for a handout. My cousin went to NOLA (volunteer – no pay). He told us that the residents just sit on the porch and watch the vounteers work...therefore, he would never go back there.

    August 31, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  7. a progressive liberal and proud of it

    I love the irony of all of the Republicans wanting to claim him as there own because he's military when nowhere in that article (or anywhere else) does the man claim to be a Republcan OR a Democrat! Also, the assumption that if one is a liberal you're automatically anti-military is really ignorant.

    August 31, 2009 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  8. Georgia for Change

    General Honore' should run for Governor. Although I'm sure he would be great senator; his abilities are best suited for a singular command role.

    August 31, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  9. Independent

    Sir, It would be nice to have you in the race

    August 31, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
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