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Vance McAllister

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Vance McAllister
Vance McAllister.jpg
U.S. House, Louisiana, District 5
Former Representative
In office
November 21, 2013 - January 3, 2015
PartyRepublican
PredecessorRodney Alexander (R)
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 4, 2014
First electedNovember 16, 2013
Term limitsN/A
Education
High schoolForest High School (1992)
Military service
Service/branchUnited States Army
Years of service1992-1994
Personal
Date of birthJanuary 7, 1974
Place of birthOak Grove, Louisiana
Vance McAllister (b. January 7, 1974, in Oak Grove, Louisiana) was previously a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives and represented Louisiana's 5th Congressional District.[1][2] He was elected in a special election on November 16, 2013.[3]

In the 2013 special election, McAllister had the support of the popular "Duck Dynasty" television series celebrities, Phil and Willie Robertson.[4]

McAllister initially announced on April 28, 2014, that he would retire at the end of his term in 2015 after calls for his resignation after it was found out he kissed one of his staffers.[5][6] The decision came after McAllister was caught on video kissing a married campaign staffer.[7]

On June 30, 2014, McAllister announced he would instead leave the decision up to the voters and run for re-election in 2014.[8] He lost his bid for re-election by not receiving enough votes to participate in the runoff on December 6, 2014.[9]

Biography

McAllister was born on January 7, 1974, in Oak Grove, LA. He graduated from Forest High School in 1992 and attended the University of Louisiana, Monroe.[10]

Career

He served in the United States Army from 1992 to 1994, and later in the Louisiana National Guard. Prior to entering Congress, McAllister was a business owner.[10]

  • 2013 - 2015: Representative for Louisiana's 5th Congressional District

Committee assignments

U.S. House

2013-2014

McAllister served on the following committees:[11][12][13]

Key votes

113th Congress

CongressLogo.png

The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 114 out of the 3,036 introduced bills (3.8 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session.[14] For more information pertaining to McAllister's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[15]

Economy

Farm bill

Yea3.png On January 29, 2014, the U.S. House approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[16] The bill passed by a vote of 251-166. The nearly 1,000-page bill reformed and continued various programs of the Department of Agriculture through 2018. The $1 trillion bill expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that would kick in when prices drop.[17][18] However, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[18] McAllister voted with 161 other Republican representatives in favor of the bill.

2014 Budget

Yea3.png On January 15, 2014, the Republican-run House approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[19][20] The House voted 359-67 for the 1,582 page bill, with 64 Republicans and three Democrats voting against the bill.[20] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[21] It included a 1 percent increase in the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel, a $1 billion increase in Head Start funding for early childhood education, reduced funding to the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency and protected the Affordable Care Act from any drastic cuts. McAllister voted with the majority of the Republican party in favor of the bill.[19]

Government affairs

HR 676

See also: Boehner's lawsuit against the Obama administration

Yea3.png On July 30, 2014, the U.S. House approved a resolution 225 to 201 to sue President Barack Obama for exceeding his constitutional authority. Five RepublicansThomas Massie of Kentucky, Paul Broun of Georgia, Scott Garrett of New Jersey, Walter Jones of North Carolina and Steve Stockman of Texas—voted with Democrats against the lawsuit.[22] McAllister joined the other 224 Republicans in favor of the lawsuit. All Democrats voted against the resolution.[23][24]

Issues

Controversy

Votes for money

A report in June 2014 alleged that McAllister told the Northeast Chapter of Louisiana CPAs an unidentified colleague on the House floor told him he would receive a $1,200 contribution from the Heritage Foundation if he voted against unidentified legislation related to the Bureau of Land Management.[25]

McAllister was quoted as saying he voted no but never received a check.[25] He claims that the quote “was taken completely out of context.”[25]

He said in a statement, “I have never cast a vote with the expectation or anticipation of receiving any money for a vote. I was just trying to illustrate how much money controls Washington, D.C., and the reporter took the comments totally out of context."[25]

Video kissing staffer

McAllister was caught on video kissing a woman believed to be on his congressional staff just before Christmas 2013.[7]

Surveillance video from inside his district office in Monroe, Louisiana, showed McAllister kissing a woman identified by the newspaper as a congressional staffer for McAllister.[7][26]

McAllister's office issued a statement on April 7, 2014:

"There's no doubt I've fallen short and I'm asking for forgiveness. I'm asking for forgiveness from God, my wife, my kids, my staff, and my constituents who elected me to serve. Trust is something I know has to be earned whether you're a husband, a father, or a congressman. I promise to do everything I can to earn back the trust of everyone I've disappointed. From day one, I've always tried to be an honest man. I ran for Congress to make a difference and not to just be another politician. I don't want to make a political statement on this, I would just simply like to say that I'm very sorry for what I've done."[27][28]

McAllister's office said it planned to send a letter to House Speaker John Boehner on April 9, 2014, requesting an FBI investigation concerning the leak of the video.[29]

McAllister missed a scheduled campaign appearance on April 14, 2014, and reportedly was instead attending family counseling.[30][31]

GOP reaction
  • House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said April 8, 2014, that McAllister’s constituents “deserve an apology.”[32]
    • “I think that his constituents deserve an apology. I’m glad he issued an apology,” Cantor said.[32]
  • On April 29, 2014, Cantor called for McAllister to resign.[33]
    • “When we took the majority, I had said that I believe we ought to hold ourselves to a higher standard. And I think what has happened in his instance doesn't meet that standard. So I told (McAllister) that I thought he should resign,” Cantor said.[33]
  • Speaker John Boehner said on April 10, 2014, that McAllister has "decisions he has to make. I expect all members to be held to the highest ethical standards.”[34]
  • Roger F. Villere, Jr. Chairman of the Republican Party of Louisiana publicly called on McAllister to resign on April 10, 2014.[35]
    • "The Republican Party of Louisiana calls on Vance McAllister to resign his seat in Congress. Mr. McAllister's extreme hypocrisy is an example of why ordinary people are fed up with politics. A breach of trust of this magnitude can only be rectified by an immediate resignation. He has embarrassed our party, our state and the institution of Congress. A video showing him engaged in conduct unbecoming a member of Congress, on public time, in a public office, with one of his employees, was the focus of the national press for days. I call on Mr. McAllister to put the interests of his nation, state and party above his own and step aside. We are praying for Mr. McAllister and the families that are involved. I attempted to resolve this matter privately and directly with Mr. McAllister, but his chief of staff chose to make this information public. Therefore, I have chosen to release this statement today."[35]
  • Governor of Louisiana Bobby Jindal (R) called for McAllister to resign on April 10, 2014.[36][37]
    • "Congressman McAllister’s behavior is an embarrassment and he should resign. He says he wants privacy to work on his issues with his family. The best way to get privacy and work on putting his family back together is to resign from Congress."[36]
Other reactions
  • Potential challenger and state Rep. Bob Johnson (D) called on McAllister to resign on April 8, 2014.[39][40]
    • "This is another embarrassment to Louisiana. I think he needs to resign, and I don't think he can be effective."[39]

Gov. Jindal's comments

McAllister issued a statement following Gov. Bobby Jindal's speech in Washington D.C. on February 24, 2014. In the speech Gov. Jindal said that President Obama was "surrendering" to the Democratic agenda and also spoke out against a federal minimum wage increase and Medicaid expansion.[41]

In the statement McAllister said:[41]

"I thought, ‘You know what, I'm not going to skirt the issue. Republican, Democrat, it don't matter. Those working poor have paid that money in. That money's going to Washington. It's their money. For me to say I'm against Medicaid expansion makes me the best congressman California and Massachusetts could ever have, because that's where that money's gonna go. It's about doing what's right. You keep your people healthy, they'll continue to work. They'll do better. The money's there. As a business guy, I don't like Gov. Jindal standing up there and trying to use political points to argue that the state can't afford the small fraction it would eventually have to pay to draw down billions in benefits. It don't take Einstein to figure out that's a pretty darn good return on your investment.'"

Congressional position

At a Chamber of Commerce luncheon in Monroe, Louisiana, on January 23, 2014, McAllister shared some blunt initial impressions of his position in Congress.[42]

“It sucks. It ain’t no fun. But, the day I start enjoying it in Washington, D.C., is the day that I should come home,” McAllister said[42]

Elections

2014

See also: Louisiana's 5th Congressional District elections, 2014

On June 30, 2014, McAllister announced he would leave the decision up to the voters and run for re-election in 2014.[43]

"Without a doubt this decision comes after much thought and prayer. This district has been home to me and my family all of my life. I know the needs of this congressional district very well. I also know that this district needs a strong, conservative voice in congress. I plan to continue to stand up for our veterans, bring common sense solutions to our nation's problems and most importantly I will fight to get our fiscal house back in order."[44]

McAllister initially announced on April 28, 2014, that he would retire at the end of his term in 2015.[5][45]

John Fleming, Representative for Louisiana's 4th Congressional District, said McCallister “absolutely” did the right thing by declining to run for re-election.[46]

“When something like this happens, there is huge pressure to tell it all and reveal it all, and you’re hounded until you do. After he announced his decision not to run again, which I respect, you’re not having that level of discussion. I think it’s best for both he and his family,” said Fleming.[46]

In June 2014, McAllister first indicated that he might reconsider another run. “I would imagine [I’ll decide] in the next couple of weeks. I’m leaning 55 to 45 percent for running. There is overwhelming support asking me to reconsider [and] it’s up to the people to decide,” he said.[47]

McAllister lost the general election by failing to acquire enough votes to be placed in a runoff. Candidates need to claim majority of the votes otherwise the two candidates with the most votes proceed to a runoff election on December 6, 2014. McAllister did not finish in the top two.

U.S. House, Louisiana District 5 General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Vance McAllister Incumbent 11.11% 26,606
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngRalph Abraham 23.16% 55,489
     Republican Harris Brown 4.13% 9,890
     Republican Zach Dasher 22.39% 53,628
     Republican Clyde Holloway 7.46% 17,877
     Republican Ed Tarpley Jr. 1.92% 4,594
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJamie Mayo 28.22% 67,611
     Libertarian Charles Saucier 0.92% 2,201
     Green Eliot Barron 0.69% 1,655
Total Votes 239,551
Source: Louisiana Secretary of State

2013

See also: Louisiana's 5th Congressional District special election, 2013

McAllister won election to the U.S. House representing the 5th Congressional District of Louisiana.[1] The election was held to replace Rodney Alexander, who announced his resignation in order to take a position as the next Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs at the end of September 2013.[48]

He defeated Tom Gibbs, Peter Williams, Eliot Barron, S.B.A. Zaitoon, Henry Herford, Jr., Weldon Russell, Jamie Mayo, Robert Johnson, Marcus Hunter, Phillip Weatherly and Clyde Holloway in the open primary on October 19. He advanced to the runoff election on November 16, 2013, where he defeated Neil Riser (R).[49][50]

U.S. House, Louisiana District 5 Runoff General Special Election, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngVance McAllister 59.6% 54,450
     Republican Neil Riser 40.4% 36,840
Total Votes 91,290
Source: Louisiana Secretary of State, "11/16/2013 Special Election Results,"
U.S. House, Louisiana District 5 Special Election Open Primary, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngNeil Riser 32% 33,045
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngVance McAllister 17.8% 18,386
     Republican Clyde Holloway 10.9% 11,250
     Republican Phillip "Blake" Weatherly 0.5% 517
     Republican Jay Morris 6.9% 7,083
     Democratic Marcus Hunter 3% 3,088
     Democratic Robert Johnson 9.6% 9,971
     Democratic Jamie Mayo 14.8% 15,317
     Democratic Weldon Russell 2.5% 2,554
     Libertarian Henry Herford, Jr. 0.9% 886
     Libertarian S.B.A. Zaitoon 0.1% 129
     Green Eliot Barron 0.5% 492
     Independent Tom Gibbs 0.3% 324
     Independent Peter Williams 0.3% 335
Total Votes 103,377
Source: Official results via Louisiana Secretary of State

Campaign donors

2014

Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are McAllister's reports.[51]

Vance McAllister (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
Year End Report[52]January 31, 2014$15,493$90,048$(52,305)$53,236
April Quarterly[53]April 15, 2014$53,236$46,955$(91,766)$8,425
July Quarterly[54]July 15, 2014$9,283$59,500$(62,204)$6,579
October Quarterly[55]October 15, 2014$233$440,591$(247,446)$193,377
Running totals
$637,094$(453,721)

Substantial debt

At the end of March 2014 – before the revelation of McAllister’s extramarital kiss with a congressional staffer – his campaign owed $207,275 to a variety of political consultancies and law firms. His campaign also owed $395,000 to McAllister, who took out a massive personal loan in the midst of his self-funded special election campaign.[56]

It’s unclear whether McAllister, who made a fortune in the oil business, had repaid any of his debts since the latest political and personal disclosure forms were filed with the Federal Election Commission.[56]

The congressman reported having $8,425 in the bank for his campaign at the end of March 2014.[56]

April 2014

In April 2014, after the release of a controversial video that featured McAllister and an aide kissing, McAllister's campaign account dropped to just $8,425.[57]

Personal Gain Index

Congressional Personal Gain Index graphic.png
See also: Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress)

The Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress) is a two-part measurement that illustrates the extent to which members of the U.S. Congress have prospered during their tenure as public servants.
It consists of two different metrics:

PGI: Donation Concentration Metric

See also: The Donation Concentration Metric (U.S. Congress Personal Gain Index)

Filings required by the Federal Election Commission report on the industries that give to each candidate. Using campaign filings and information calculated by OpenSecrets.org, Ballotpedia calculated the percentage of donations by industry received by each incumbent over the course of his or her career (or 1989 and later, if elected prior to 1988). McAllister received the most donations from individuals and PACs employed by the Leadership PACs industry.

From 2013-2014, 12.81 percent of McAllister's career contributions came from the top five industries as listed below.[58]

Donation Concentration Metric graphic.png
Vance McAllister Campaign Contributions
Total Raised $983,205
Total Spent $982,972
Top five industries that contributed to campaign committee
Leadership PACs$58,800
Crop Production & Basic Processing$25,700
Health Professionals$14,850
Lawyers/Law Firms$14,250
General Contractors$12,350
% total in top industry5.98%
% total in top two industries8.59%
% total in top five industries12.81%

Analysis

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[59]

McAllister most often voted with:

McAllister least often voted with:

Lifetime voting record

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, McAllister missed 47 of 510 roll call votes from November 2013 to August 2014. This amounts to 9.2 percent, which is worse than the median of 2.5 percent among current congressional representatives as of August 2014.[60]

Voting with party

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus.

2014

McAllister voted with the Republican Party 0.00 percent of the time, which ranked 231st among the 234 House Republican members as of August 2014.[61]

Personal

McAllister is married and has five children.[62]

Recent news

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 KATC, "14 candidates in 5th District congressional race," accessed August 22, 2013
  2. Roll Call, "8 Things to Know About Rep.-Elect Vance McAllister," accessed November 19, 2013
  3. WAFB, "5th Congressional District Vance McAllister sworn in," accessed November 21, 2013
  4. The Republic, "Riser and McAllister headed to November runoff for Louisiana's 5th District congressional seat," accessed October 19, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 NOLA.com, "Vance McAllister won't seek re-election, The News-Star reports ," accessed April 28, 2014
  6. The News Star, "UPDATE: McAllister won't seek re-election, will finish term," accessed April 28, 2014
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Politico, "Report: Video shows Vance McAllister kissing staffer," accessed April 7, 2014
  8. NOLA.com, "Rep. Vance McAllister will run for re-election," accessed July 2, 2014
  9. Politico, "House Election Results," accessed November 4, 2014
  10. 10.0 10.1 Bioguide, "MCALLISTER, Vance M., (1974 - )," accessed November 25, 2013
  11. NOLA.com, "Vance McAllister, Louisiana's newest congressman, get his committee assignments," accessed December 17, 2013
  12. Insurance News Net, "Congressman McAllister Announces Subcommittee Assignments on the House Agriculture Committee," accessed March 18, 2014
  13. U.S. House of Representatives, "Committee assignments," accessed March 31, 2014
  14. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  15. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  16. Clerk of U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 31: H.R. 2642," accessed February 12, 2014
  17. Politico, "House clears farm bill," accessed February 12, 2014
  18. 18.0 18.1 New York Times, "Senate passes long-stalled farm bill, with clear winners and losers," accessed February 12, 2014
  19. 19.0 19.1 CNN.com, "House passes compromise $1.1 trillion budget for 2014," accessed January 20, 2014
  20. 20.0 20.1 U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 21," accessed January 20, 2014
  21. Roll Call, "House passes $1.1 trillion omnibus," accessed January 20, 2014
  22. U.S. House, "House Resolution 676," accessed July 30, 2014
  23. Yahoo News, "Suing Obama: GOP-led House gives the go-ahead," accessed July 30, 2014
  24. Washington Post, "House clears way for lawsuit against Obama," accessed July 30, 2014
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 Shreveport Times, "Vance McAllister says comments were taken 'out of context'," accessed June 9, 2014
  26. The Ouachita Citizen, "VIDEO: Rep. Vance McAllister in extramarital embrace," accessed April 8, 2014
  27. Yahoo News, "Congressman apologizes after compromising video posted," accessed April 8, 2014
  28. NOLA, "Vance McAllister on video showing kiss with staffer: 'I've fallen short and I'm asking for forgiveness'," accessed April 8, 2014
  29. The News Star, "McAllister to ask for FBI probe on leaked video," accessed April 9, 2014
  30. The Town Talk, "Congressman McAllister seeking family counseling," accessed April 15, 2014
  31. The News Star, "McAllister cancels appearance, undergoing counseling," accessed April 15, 2014
  32. 32.0 32.1 The Hill, "Cantor withholds judgment on McAllister," accessed April 12, 2014
  33. 33.0 33.1 The Advertiser, "McAllister rejects Cantor’s call to resign," accessed April 30, 2014
  34. Politico, "Vance McAllister’s new problem: His own party," accessed April 10, 2014
  35. 35.0 35.1 Louisiana GOP, "Statement from Roger F. Villere, Jr. Chairman, Republican Party of Louisiana," accessed April 12, 2014
  36. 36.0 36.1 Washington Post, "Jindal: McAllister an ‘embarrassment,’ should resign," accessed April 12, 2014
  37. NOLA.com, "Bobby Jindal calls on Vance McAllister to resign," accessed April 12, 2014
  38. 38.0 38.1 Politico, "Walden declines to say whether McAllister should resign," accessed April 14, 2014
  39. 39.0 39.1 NOLA.com, "Vance McAllister should resign, says state lawmaker," accessed April 15, 2014
  40. Huffington Post, "Vance McAllister's Potential Challenger Calls On Him To Resign," accessed April 15, 2014
  41. 41.0 41.1 KNOE TV,, "McAllister speaks out after Jindal episode in D.C.," accessed February 25, 2014
  42. 42.0 42.1 Shreveport Times, "U.S. Rep. Vance McAllister: Congressional job 'sucks'," accessed January 24, 2013
  43. NOLA.com, "Rep. Vance McAllister will run for re-election," accessed July 2, 2014
  44. Washington Post, "Embattled Rep. Vance McAllister is running for re-election," accessed July 2, 2014
  45. NY Daily News, "Smooching Congressman Vance McAllister won't run for re-election," accessed April 28, 2014
  46. 46.0 46.1 Shreveport Times, "John Fleming: Vance McAllister right not to run for re-election," accessed June 10, 2014
  47. Politico, "Vance McAllister might un-retire," accessed June 23, 2014
  48. Nola.com, "Rodney Alexander to join Jindal administration, departure from Congress will trigger special election," accessed August 8, 2013
  49. Louisiana Secretary of State, "November 16, 2013, Election Results," accessed November 16, 2013
  50. Louisiana Secretary of State, "U. S. Representative -- 5th Congressional District," accessed October 19, 2013
  51. Federal Election Commission, "Vance McAllister 2014 Summary reports," accessed April 8, 2014
  52. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed April 8, 2014
  53. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 23, 2014
  54. Federal Election Commission, "July Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2014
  55. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2014
  56. 56.0 56.1 56.2 Politico, "'Kissing congressman' Vance McAllister heavy in debt," accessed July 2, 2014
  57. Politico, "McAllister campaign coffers: $8,425," accessed April 19, 2014
  58. OpenSecrets.org, "Rep. Vance McAllister," accessed September 24, 2014
  59. OpenCongress, "Vance McAllister," accessed August 1, 2014
  60. GovTrack, "Vance McAllister," accessed August 4, 2014
  61. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  62. Washington Times, "Married Rep. Vance McAllister caught kissing staffer: “I’ve fallen short’," accessed April 8, 2014


Political offices
Preceded by
Rodney Alexander (R)
U.S. House of Representatives - Louisiana, District 5
2013–2015
Succeeded by
Ralph Abraham (R)