Sen. David Vitter – Nominee, GOP Adulterers Hall of Fame

Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana is the classic GOP adulterer: He made his career by fooling feeble-minded voters that he was an adherent to family values — all while engaging in a penchant for sex with prostitutes:

In early July 2007, Vitter’s phone number was included in a published list of phone records of Pamela Martin and Associates, a company owned and run by Deborah Jeane Palfrey, also known as the “D.C. Madam”, which is accused by the U.S. government of being a prostitution service. Hustler magazine identified the phone number and contacted Vitter’s office to ask about his connection to Palfrey. The following day, Vitter issued a written statement:

This was a very serious sin in my past for which I am, of course, completely responsible. Several years ago, I asked for and received forgiveness from God and my wife in confession and marriage counseling. Out of respect for my family, I will keep my discussion of the matter there – with God and them. But I certainly offer my deep and sincere apologies to all I have disappointed and let down in any way.

The statement containing Vitter’s apology said his telephone number was included on phone records dating from his days as a member of the House of Representatives. Phone records show that Vitter’s number was called by Palfrey’s service five times, the first on October 12, 1999, and the last on February 27, 2001. Two calls were placed while House roll call votes were in progress.

But wait, there’s more:

On July 10, 2007, Jeanette Maier, the “Canal Street Madam”, alleged that Vitter was a customer on more than one occasion in the 1990s, when Maier was identified by federal prosecutors as operating a $300 per hour brothel. The Times-Picayune reported that “Maier offered no evidence or documents to support her claim.” Maier said that Vitter “was not a freak. He was not into anything unusual or kinky or weird,” and that he favored one prostitute in particular, Wendy Cortez,the name of the prostitute with whom Vitter had been accused, during his 2004 campaign, of having had a lengthy affair. Vitter denied that allegation during the campaign. On July 12, Cortez told The Times-Picayune that Vitter was “a regular customer” during his time in the state legislature, but that they “did not have a romantic relationship.” On September 12, 2007, The Times-Picayune reported that the woman, whose real name was Wendy Ellis, had passed a lie detector exam.

And, apparently, Vitter had a fetish for wearing diapers:

When Republican Senator David Vitter rented prostitutes back home in New Orleans, there was more than sex, he liked the hookers to make him wear diapers. And that makes this campaign ad dug up by Talking Points Memo all the more hilarious and disgusting:

Vitter was elected to the House in a special election in May 1999 to replace another Louisiana Republican, Bob Livingston, who’d lost his seat because of his maritial infidelities — and who was about to become House Speaker, replacing Newt Gingrich, who was ousted because it was revealed he, Gingrich, was having an affair with a staffer at the same time he was orchestrating the impeachment of Pres. Clinton over his lie under oath regarding an extramarital affair with a staffer.

Vitter claims to be a true believer in the “sanctity” of marriage:

Vitter believes strongly that marriage is a sacred vow between a man and a woman. In 2003, Vitter proposed to amend the U.S. Constitution to ban same sex marriages. In 2004, he said, “This is a real outrage. The Hollywood left is redefining the most basic institution in human history…We need a U.S. senator who will stand up for Louisiana values, not Massachusetts’s values.”

In June 2006, he said “I don’t believe there’s any issue that’s more important than this one … I think this debate is very healthy, and it’s winning a lot of hearts and minds. I think we’re going to show real progress.” In 2006, he told The Times-Picayune, “I’m a conservative who opposes radically redefining marriage, the most important social institution in human history.”

In October 2005, at a Lafayette Parish Republican Executive Committee luncheon, Vitter compared gay marriage to hurricanes Katrina and Rita, which came through the same geographical areas. Vitter said “It’s the crossroads where Katrina meets Rita. I always knew I was against same-sex unions.”

The final hypocrisy here is that while Sen. Larry Craig is being investigated by the Senate ethics committee, Vitter has been given a pass by his conservative brethren.