I expected David Vitter’s press conference today to be mostly grovelling, with some attacks on the press thrown in. No such. Apparently Vitter denied all the New Orleans allegations — he’d already admitted the DC allegations — but refused to take any questions. Mrs. Vitter decided to do a Hillary Clinton rather than a Lorena Bobbit after all. (Thanks to all of you who sent steak knives.)
This seems puzzling. Assume for the moment the accusations are true, which seems likely given that both the madam and the sex worker have gone public with their allegations. (The fact that the madam seems to be something of a fan of Vitter increases both the general weirdness and her credibility.) What does Vitter gain by admitting one “sin” but denying the others?
The only theory that comes to mind is the Vitter already went on record in 2004 denying the charges, and figures he can get away with buying disgustingly kinky commercial sex but not with having lied to the press and the voters. But if he gets nailed now on the Canal Street charges, I’d guess that he’d be more or less finished. In the age of DNA testing, he’s at huge risk if the story about his having a natural child by one of the Canal Street madam’s employees turns out to be true.
For now, his refusal to answer any questions doesn’t look to me like a good sign about his veracity. Perhaps he’s just stalling for time, planning to resign next year when a Republican governor would probably be able to appoint his replacement.
Update Oyster at the Louisiana politics blog Your Right Hand Thief thinks that Vitter has gone all-in on a busted flush, and that someone is certain to call:
This statement virtually guarantees that Vitter will be forced to resign sometime this year, probably in weeks, as more disclosures occur and corroborative evidence is unveiled. He can’t lie his way out of this. What Vitter’s seemingly implying —that his sinful “actions” occurred only in D.C.— is so utterly ridiculous based on what I know that I can’t believe he’s trying to get away with it.