"So Senator Dave Vitter screwed one person in New Orleans and won a million headlines. No one noticed when he, his fellow war supporters in Congress, and the White House repeatedly screwed the city's entire (former) population before and after Hurricane Katrina hit.... In June 2005, the Corps budget for New Orleans was slashed by $71.2 million, the heaviest cut the flood-prone city had ever experienced."
But nevertheless, today's Vitter news:
1) Yesterday, I wrote about a Shreveport Times article reporting that the Louisiana GOP is considering working with Democratic Gov. Kathleen Blanco to dump Vitter. The party is now denying this. "Louisiana Republicans rallied around embattled Sen. David Vitter on Thursday, emphasizing the work he has done for Louisiana in his eight years in Congress. Former Gov. and Congressman David Treen said Vitter, a conservative Republican, has no plans to leave office despite allegations this week that he has patronized prostitution services in Washington and New Orleans. 'Any talk of David Vitter resigning or me being appointed to his Senate seat is ridiculous," Treen said in a statement. "It's just not going to happen.'" The party's main stalwart, however, Congressman and future Governor Bobby Jindal, continues to remain silent.
2) Vitter's starting to come out of hiding. He sent a message ap-hollow-gizing to his supporters today, and will likely go back to work next week.
3) The AP tells us, "A woman accused of running a Washington prostitution ring placed five phone calls to David Vitter while he was a House member, including two while roll call votes were under way, according to telephone and congressional records." The article says it's unknown whether Vitter answered the phone during the votes or not - it may have been voice mail or an aide.
4) The Senator's office sounds like it's denying he had anything to do with the Canal Street Madame, and one prostitute in particular (named Wendy, same as his wife), just the DC ring. I don't buy it, but, whatever.
Also, check out this post from the Politico. It's a roundup of quotes from various Capitol Hill aides of both parties talking about the fallout - or lack thereof - from the Vitter scandal.
Tomorrow, I'll be posting pictures of Mississippi's hurricane recovery. In the meantime, you know what's ridiculous? Since the Vitter scandal broke and I started writing about it, this blog's daily page views have at least tripled. And unfortunately, the Google searches people are using to find this blog (I can tell using sitemeter.com) aren't for FEMA, for Katrina recovery, for the Lower Ninth Ward, or even for David Vitter or Vitter prostitute. No, the vast majority of my readers are getting here by googling "Vitter Diaper." And indeed, I am on the first page of Google results for that phrase. For the love of God. The man's diaper fetish has to be the LEAST important part of this story. Focus on the hypocrisy! Focus on the illegal nature of prostitution! Focus on the political ramifications! Focus on what the man hasn't done for Katrina recovery! FOCUS ON THE KATRINA RECOVERY! Geeeez.