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What The Pundits Are Not Saying About Vitter

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Message Stephen Crockett

This writer is surprised that the mainstream media seem to be controlling the political dialogue in America and (this is the surprising part) the political class is simply going along. The questions not being asked, the ideas not being reported and the serious problems not being addressed are much more important than those frequently available from the corporate controlled, mainstream media. The Vitter Sex Scandal is just one interesting example with a degree of sex appeal.


Why are politicians and media pundits not calling for the resignation of Senator Vitter? From the limited facts published in the corporate media, it looks like Vitter may be a criminal and a repeat offender. If the Republican Senator from Louisiana is truly a frequent consumer of the sexual services of prostitutes, he has violated laws.


Of course, Vitter may have sexual or emotional problems that explain his behavior. On the other hand, he may not be lying about his sexual behavior. It is slightly possible that all the others admitting to their sex for money relationships with Vitter are all liars. The DC Madam case just might be only a non-sexual escort service. The police and prosecutors might be wrong. Vitter might be innocent and everyone else guilty or wrong. For the official Vitter talking points to be valid, a large number of other individual must all be wrong.


Vitter is widely known as a morality crusader with his political base in the Christian Right. Vitter was a bitter critic of President Clinton during the impeachment process. Senator Vitter asked Clinton’s morality. Along with almost all the Republican leadership, he cited “breaking the law” over alleged perjury as the reason Clinton should be driven from public office.


Senator Vitter broke the law if he hired prostitutes. It is reported that Vitter did so on often in different locations and with different prostitutes. If the details are correct, hiring prostitutes for sex is illegal in those jurisdictions. Using Vitter’s own logic, he should be forced from office.


The sheer hypocrisy makes the Vitter Sex Scandal much worse. Vitter betrayed his wife. Vitter betrayed his oath of office. Vitter betrayed his supporters. He appears to be a liar along with being a hypocrite. Media pundits and politicians should be talking about this issue in these terms.


It might be worth exploring the legality of prostitution as a larger issue. The nation is long overdue for a new political dialogue on victimless crime issues like the legalization, regulation and taxation of marijuana. Even Republican politicians might approach these social issues with more open minds, as a result of their repeated involvement in recent sex and drug scandals.


These larger issues involve crowded prisons, racial bias in the jailing citizens, judicial equity, voting rights, future employment opportunities and spending tax dollars. The mainstream media would do the nation a favor by discussing Vitter and enlarging the scope of public debate on the issues raised.

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Stephen Crockett is co-host of Democratic Talk Radio and author of the Democratic Voices opinion column.
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