10 July 2007

vitter sex scandal: wst... fave & state house candidate christopher tidmore vindicated

**updated** 11:52 am cdt wednesday 11 july 2007


By Elana Schor and Sam Youngman
July 11, 2007
Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) was Capitol Hill’s invisible man yesterday, lying low even as his ties to the notorious “D.C. Madam” threatened to become a political crisis for the conservative lawmaker.
Vitter has faced allegations of involvement with prostitutes before, but had said such charges were false and politically motivated attacks.

In Louisiana yesterday, at least two state Republicans — one a columnist and statehouse candidate and the other a state party official and Vitter rival — were claiming vindication after Vitter’s admission.

In 2002, state GOP official Vincent Bruno charged on talk radio that Vitter had engaged in an extramarital affair.

Bruno told Christopher Tidmore, a political columnist for The Louisiana Weekly and a candidate for the state legislature, that Vitter had consorted for 11 months with a New Orleans prostitute who went by the name Wendy Cortez.

Tidmore told The Hill that other Republicans were aware of the alleged affair, adding that former Gov. Mike Foster (R) had used the information to dissuade Vitter from running for governor in 2001. At the time, Vitter said marital issues kept him from running.

After the allegations surfaced, Vitter attacked Tidmore and Bruno for engaging in “crass Louisiana politics,” adding that the charges were “completely untrue” and “obviously politically motivated.”

Tidmore, who has reported on the story for almost five years, insisted he has no “political ax to grind” with Vitter.

Bruno told The Hill yesterday that Vitter should follow Livingston’s lead and resign for the good of the state party, adding that he thinks more details or more affairs could come to light. He noted that Republican candidates are poised to unseat Blanco this year and mount a strong challenge against Landrieu next year.

“It’s going to be devastating if it comes out,” Bruno said. “He’s got a real problem, and he needs to tend to it. And it doesn’t need to be in the public eye when he does if he cares about his family.”

While talking to The Hill on the phone, Bruno took another call, which he said was from another state party official telling him not to talk to reporters about Vitter.
click here to read more from the hill

**update** 2:55 pm cdt wednesday 11 july 2007 the dead pelican linked to the hill story.
note: at 10:43 pm cdt last night wst... sent this link to the dead pelican which inexplicably has refused to link to it.

**updated 9:39 pm cdt tueday 10 july 2007**

wst... just received the following press release from christopher tidmore:

Contact: Christopher Tidmore
(504) ***-**** office
(504) ***-**** cell

Washington Post Says: Tidmore Vindicated By Vitter Revelations

Mary Ann Akers wrote in her daily column "Sleuth...Behind the Scenes in Washington" at Washingtonpost.com about the David Vitter affair:

“Also worth noting, in an ironic twist of fate, a Louisiana reporter who wrote a few years back about allegations that Vitter had an extramarital affair with a prostitute is now running for the Louisiana state legislature and issued a press release today claiming he is ‘vindicated’ by the Vitter revelations,” Akers stated.

“The candidate, Christopher Tidmore, reported in The Louisiana Weekly newspaper in the summer of 2002, after Vitter dropped out of the race for governor, that Vitter, a state representative at the time, had allegedly engaged in an 11-month affair with a prostitute. At the time, Vitter dismissed the allegations as a political smear campaign by rival Republicans.”

“Tidmore released a statement today saying, ‘Mr. Vitter has used his considerable power to attempt to silence those who knew the truth. Those who attempted to expose hypocrisy and corruption early on were met with threats and disdain. ... Mr. Vitter's actions have harmed Louisiana at a time when we could not afford any further loss of influence in Washington.’”

THE FULL STORY IS AT http://blog.washingtonpost.com

Nearly five years ago, Louisiana Weekly columnist Christopher Tidmore reported that David Vitter, while a Louisiana State Representative, had allegedly conducted an eleven month affair with a known prostitute, Wendy Cortez—meeting typically at a small apartment at the corner of Dumaine and Dauphine Streets in the French Quarter.

Despite testimony from four senior Republicans who spoke to Cortez--and direct confirmation from the source--then-Congressman David Vitter accused Tidmore of “crass Louisiana politics, now that I am running for the Senate. I have made that clear that it is all completely untrue...And, it's obviously politically motivated."
Christopher Tidmore said Monday evening, “Mr. Vitter has used his considerable power to attempt to silence those who knew the truth. Those who attempted to expose hypocrisy and corruption early on were met with threats and disdain. It is time for real leadership to stop this culture of corruption, incompetence and hypocrisy from plaguing our political system. Mr. Vitter’s actions have harmed Louisiana at a time when we could not afford any further loss of influence in Washington.”

“By conducting a series of lies over more than half a decade, Mr. Vitter has irreparably damaged his ability to represent the people of Louisiana at the very time we need integrity and commitment most. We need true ethics, not fake ethical posturing,” Tidmore said. "We need real leadership and moral values, not hypocrisy and intimidation. Louisiana needs new leadership."
click link to read more from the dead pelican
see also
your right hand thief
david vitter series
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