With so many Republicans falling into the thoroughly despicable category nowadays, it is sometimes difficult to estimate which ones are the most despicable. By any measure, prostitute loving, gay hating Senator David Vitter (R-La) has to rank near the top in terms of both utter hypocrisy and sleaze factor. Vitter for years ridiculously used the excuse that he had repented from his erroneous ways to get himself reelected by simpletons and godly folk in Louisiana. Last night Louisiana voters seemingly finally got their heads out of their asses and Vitter went down to Democrat John Bel Edwards who garnered 56% of the vote. While the results suggest that Republicans in Louisiana may be belatedly coming to their senses, the same unfortunately doesn't hold true elsewhere. A piece in Talking Points Memo looks at Vitter's delicious loss. Here are highlights:
[I]t is nice to see the political career of David Vitter - someone we've been following closely at TPM for almost a decade - go down in flames tonight. But there's an additional part of the story, an additional piece of good news. As Catherine Thompson explained here, Vitter devoted the last week of his campaign to demagoguing the Syrian refugee issue in a desperate effort to save himself. He even went beyond the standard scare talk and hyperbole to trying to whip hysteria against a specific Syrian refugee who Vitter falsely claimed had mysteriously disappeared and was now at large in the state. (The man in question had, all through official channels and with appropriate notifications, been relocated to the Washington, DC region where he had relatives.)[T]he race had become a potential bellwether for Syrian refugee hysteria and politics. Perhaps even the fear of terrorism or hatred for the desperate and forlorn was not enough to overcome the state's building revulsion for the man-child senator.Not only did Vitter not make a comeback. The final election results (almost a 10 point win) suggest the last minute immigrant-terror bashing had no effect at all.We're still seeing how this all plays out. I don't mean to tell you that Syrian refugee hysteria politics is nothing. But in this case it wasn't enough. Indeed, it does not appear to have helped Vitter at all - not even to partially close the gap. And that is worth noting.