Difference between revisions of "David Vitter"

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Line 85: Line 85:
===U.S. Senate===
===U.S. Senate===
Vitter serves on the following Senate committees<ref>[http://media.cq.com/pub/committees/index.php?chamber=senate ''Congressional Quarterly'', "Senate Committee List," accessed January 22, 2013]</ref>:
Vitter serves on the following Senate committees<ref>[http://media.cq.com/pub/committees/index.php?chamber=senate ''Congressional Quarterly'', "Senate Committee List," accessed January 22, 2013]</ref><ref>[https://www.senate.gov/general/committee_assignments/assignments.htm ''United States Senate'', "Committee Assignments," accessed March 29, 2014]</ref>:
*[[United States Senate Committee on Armed Services|Armed Services Committee]]
*[[United States Senate Committee on Armed Services|Armed Services Committee]]
**Subcommittee on Strategic Forces
**Subcommittee on Strategic Forces

Revision as of 15:33, 29 March 2014

David Vitter
David Vitter.jpg
U.S. Senate, Louisiana
In office
January 3, 2005-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2017
Years in position 10
PredecessorJohn B. Breaux (D)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
First electedNovember 2, 2004
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Campaign $$23,290,537
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
U.S. House of Representatives
Louisiana State House of Representatives
High schoolDe La Salle High School
Bachelor'sHarvard University
J.D.Tulane Law School
OtherRhodes Scholar
Date of birthMay 3, 1961
Place of birthNew Orleans, LA
Net worth$1,633,027.50
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Campaign website


David Vitter (b. September 8, 1941, in New Orleans, LA) is a Republican member of the U.S. Senate from the state of Louisiana. Vitter was first elected to the Senate in 2004.[1]

Vitter is running for Governor of Louisiana in 2015. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) is term limited and cannot run.[2]

He previously was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1999 to 2005 and a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1992 to 1999.[1]

In July 2007, Vitter was identified as a client of a prostitution service during the DC Madam scandal.[3][4]

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Vitter is an average Republican member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Republican Party on the majority of bills.


Vitter was born in 1961 in New Orleans, Louisiana. He received his A.B. from Harvard University in 1983 and a B.A. from Oxford University (as a Rhodes Scholar) in 1985. Vitter went on to receive his J.D. from Tulane Law School in 1988.[1]


Below is an abbreviated outline of Vitter's political career[1]:

Committee assignments

U.S. Senate


Vitter serves on the following Senate committees[5][6]:


Vitter served on the following Senate committees[7]:


Legislative actions

113th Congress


The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 224 out of the 3215 introduced bills (7 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session.[8] The Senate confirmed 13,949 out of 18,323 executive nominations received (76.1 percent). For more information pertaining to Vitter's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[9]

National security

American response in Syria
See also: United States involvement in Syria

Vitter said on August 27, 2013, during a speech to the Chamber of Commerce of East Baton Rouge Parish, that he thinks the international community should respond to the Syrian regime's use of chemical weapons against rebel fighters and civilians, but would not support direct intervention by the U.S. military.[10]

During the speech Vitter touched on a number of issues but took time before and after the meeting to express his concern over a potential military intervention looming in Syria.[10]

"It's obviously very, very serious," Vitter said, referring to evidence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad authorized the use of chemical weapons against rebel fighters, that activists say also killed hundreds of civilians, outside of the capital city of Damascus in August 2013.[10]

"I certainly agree with (Secretary of State) John Kerry -- I don't say that a lot -- but I agree with John Kerry that the use of chemical weapons there and other abuses there are deplorable," he said. "The community of civilized nations should do something about it. I don't think that should translate to American boots on the ground."[10]

Opposition to authorization

Vitter announced on September 5, 2013, that he opposes a resolution offering authorization for up to 60 days of military attacks on Syria, with the possibility of a 30-day extension.[11]

"After a lot of careful thought and prayer, I have decided that I will vote NO on the Syria war resolution," he said in a statement.[11]

"As horrible as events in Syria are, they do not pose a direct threat to the United States or our allies," Vitter continued. "U.S. military action could spark a broader war and/or entangle us in Syria's protracted civil war in which elements of the opposition are even worse than the Assad regime, all while our troops are underfunded...There is a very serious and direct threat to us in the region - Iran's development of nuclear weapons. I am extremely concerned that getting involved in Syria, after Iraq and Afghanistan, would make mustering our resolve to stop a nuclear Iran impossible."[11]

John Brennan CIA nomination

Neutral/Abstain Vitter did not vote on the confirmation of John Brennan as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The nomination was confirmed by the Senate on March 7, 2013, with a vote of 63 - 34. Most Democrats supported the nomination, while Republicans were somewhat divided with roughly one-third supporting the nomination.[12]

Drones filibuster
See also: Rand Paul filibuster of John Brennan's CIA Nomination in March 2013

On March 6, 2013, Senator Rand Paul (R) led a 13-hour filibuster of President Obama's CIA Director nominee, John Brennan. Paul started the filibuster in order to highlight his concerns about the administration's drone policies. In particular, Paul said he was concerned about whether a drone could be used to kill an American citizen within the United States border, without any due process involved. Paul and other civil liberties activists criticized President Obama for not offering a clear response to the question. A total of 14 senators joined Paul in the filibuster -- 13 Republicans and one Democrat.[13][14][15]

According to the website Breitbart, Vitter was one of 30 Republican senators who did not support the filibuster.[16][17]

The day after the filibuster, Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to Paul, responding to the filibuster. Holder wrote, "Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil? The answer to that is no."[18]


Farm bill

Yea3.png On February 4, 2014, the Democratic controlled Senate approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[19] It passed the Senate with a vote of 68-32. 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 will kick in when prices drop; however, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[20] Vitter joined with 19 other Republican senators in favor of the bill.

2014 Budget

Yea3.png On January 16, 2014, the Democratic-controlled Senate approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[21][22] The Senate voted 72-26 for the 1,582 page bill, with 17 Republicans and 55 Democrats voting in favor of the bill.[22] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[23] 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 left the Affordable Care Act without any drastic cuts. Vitter voted with the 17 Republican and the 55 Democratic members in favor of the bill.[21][22]

Government shutdown
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "No" During the shutdown in October 2013, the Senate rejected, down party lines, every House-originated bill that stripped the budget of funding for the Affordable Care Act. A deal was reached late on October 16, 2013, just hours before the debt ceiling deadline. The bill to reopen the government, H.R. 2775, lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funds the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[24] The final vote on H.R. 2775 was 81-18, with all 18 votes against the bill from Republican members. Vitter voted with the Republican Party against the bill.[25]

Letter to Congress on Affordable Care Act
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

In August 2013, Vitter signed onto a letter that threatened a government shutdown unless Congress voted to defund the Affordable Care Act.[26]

The letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, organized by Sen. Mike Lee, was signed by 11 fellow Republicans, including Vitter.[26] It cites the president's recent decision to delay a mandate for one year that requires employers with 50 or more workers to provide health insurance or pay a penalty while going ahead with implementation of the rest of the law, including an individual mandate to purchase insurance -- with subsidies for low-income Americans -- as scheduled in January.[26]

"The president cannot seriously expect to waive ObamaCare's onerous mandates on large businesses, while simultaneously forcing individuals and families to pay to implement an individual mandate the public has opposed since before the law was even passed," reads the letter to Reid. "For these reasons, we will not support any continuing resolution or appropriations legislation that funds further implementation or enforcement of ObamaCare."[26]

Vitter also said that he will not vote for legislation to continue paying for U.S. government services beyond September 30, 2013, if it contains money for the health care law’s implementation.[27]

The issue is a divide among Republicans, some of whom say a shutdown effort could damage GOP candidates at the polls and create a backlash from the American public.[27]

No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013

Voted "No" Vitter voted against H.R.325 -- No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013. The bill passed the Senate on January 31, 2013, with a vote of 64 - 34. The purpose of the bill was to temporarily suspend the debt ceiling and withhold the pay of members of Congress until a budget could be passed. The vote largely followed party lines with Democrats overwhelmingly supporting it and many Republicans in opposition to the bill.[12]

2013 Senate Budget Proposal

Voted "No" Vitter voted against the 2013 Senate Budget Proposal.[12] On March 23, after an all-night debate that ended just before 5 a.m., by a 50 to 49 vote the Democratically controlled Senate approved its first budget in four years. No Republicans voted for the Senate plan, and four Democrats opposed it. All four are from red states and are up for re-election in 2014. Vitter was one of the four Democrats who voted against the budget proposal.[12]

The approved plan is a $3.7 trillion budget for 2014 and would provide a fast track for passage of tax increases, trim spending modestly and leave the government still deeply in the red for the next decade.

The approval of a budget in the Senate began the process of setting up contentious, and potentially fruitless, negotiations with the Republican-controlled House starting in April to reconcile two vastly different plans for dealing with the nation’s economic and budgetary problems.

The House plan would have brought the government’s taxes and spending into balance by 2023 with cuts to domestic spending even below the levels of automatic across-the-board cuts for federal programs now, and it orders up dramatic and controversial changes to Medicare and the tax code.

The Senate plan differed greatly, and included $100 billion in upfront infrastructure spending to bolster the economy and calls for special fast-track rules to overhaul the tax code and raise $975 billion over 10 years in legislation that could not be filibustered. Even with that tax increase and prescribed spending cuts, the plan approved by the Senate would leave the government with a $566 billion annual deficit in 10 years, and $5.2 trillion in additional debt over that window.


Citizens United spokesperson

In November 2013, Vitter announced that he was the spokesman for a national advertising campaign by Citizens United that alleges members of Congress are being helped by the Obama administration to exempt them from the Affordable Care Act.[28]

"Barack Obama ignored the law and issued a special rule," Vitter says in an ad. "He exempted Congress from the pain of Obamacare and gave them a huge taxpayer-funded subsidy for their health care that no one else gets."[28]

Affordable Care Act subsidies

Vitter introduced Senate Bill 1497 on September 12, 2013 to expand the required coverage by state health insurance exchange American Health Benefit Exchange from Members of Congress and their staff to also include the President, Vice-President, executive branch political appointees and employees of congressional committees and leadership offices of Congress. It also prohibits any government contribution to or subsidy of this coverage. It was originally co-sponsored by Mike Enzi, Dean Heller, Mike Lee, Ron Johnson and Jim Inhofe. Ted Cruz joined in on September 17.[29] The basis of Vitter's bill is similar to an earlier attempt by Republican Senator Chuck Grassley to obstruct the ACA, which backfired.[30]

Vitter's bill is a response to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management ruling that allows Members of Congress and their staff to keep their insurance subsidies provided by the government.The federal agency issued a proposed rule in August 2013. After a comment period, a final rule was issued and became effective October 2, 2013.[31][32]

Clash with Cruz

Ted Cruz (R-TX) wanted to broaden Vitter’s proposal to put lawmakers on the exchanges without a tax subsidy to include all federal employees, but Vitter argues such a move would only make it easier for Democrats to defeat it.[33]

“We should vote on the Vitter amendment. Indeed I’d like to see the Vitter amendment broader,” Cruz said, praising the amendment. Expanding the requirement to all federal employees — an idea floated by another unnamed Republican, Cruz said — is “terrific.”[33]

“Right now federal employees earn substantially more than the private sector does. I don’t think there is any entitlement to take our tax dollars and live in a privileged condition as a federal employee,” Cruz said.[33]

“Sen. Vitter strongly opposes this effort as it would effectively ensure Congress keeps their exemption, and it’s clearly part of an effort to keep the Obamacare exemption for Congress,” Vitter chief of staff Kyle Ruckert wrote in an email to Republican chiefs of staff on September 23, 2013. “Democrats and moderates would easily vote this down, with very little to no pressure. They would vote no, in order to protect the millions of federal employees, their unions, active duty military and some public school teachers.[33]


Mexico-U.S. border

Voted "Yes" Vitter voted for Senate Amendment 1197 -- Requires the Completion of the Fence Along the United States-Mexico Border. The amendment was rejected by the Senate on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 39 - 54. The purpose of the amendment was to require the completion of 350 miles of fence described in the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 before registered provisional immigrant status may be granted. It would also require 700 miles of fence be completed before the status of registered provisional immigrants may be changed to permanent resident status. The vote followed party lines.[12]

Social Issues

Violence Against Women (2013)

Voted "Yes" Vitter voted for S.47 -- Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013. The bill was passed by the Senate on February 12, 2013, with a vote of 78 - 22. The purpose of the bill was to combat violence against women, from domestic violence to international trafficking in persons. All 22 dissenting votes were cast by Republicans.[12]

Prosecute EBT theft

Vitter urged the state attorney general and secretary of Department of Children and Family Services to take aggressive action on the theft and fraud that took place October 12, 2013, in at least two northwest Louisiana retail stores during an outage of the Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) system.[34] In a letter written to Attorney General Buddy Caldwell and DCFS Secretary Suzy Sonnier on October 30, 2013, he said,“The outrageous theft and fraud at several Louisiana retailers, including at the Walmart stores in Mansfield and Springhill, is completely unacceptable. Like many citizens, I am appalled and believe there should be serious consequences for what occurred; so far, I have heard of none.”[34]

He made three recommendations for state officials:[34]

  • Take action to ensure that no reimbursements are made to retailers who didn’t follow proper protocol.
  • Disqualify any EBT beneficiary who knowingly stole groceries during the outage.
  • Work to set up a local task force to pursue prosecutions of the theft and fraud cases.

2013 introduced bills

According to a January 2014 Politico report, Vitter introduced 67 bills, the most of any senator in 2013.[35]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal Cliff

Voted "Yes" Vitter voted for the fiscal cliff compromise bill, which made permanent most of the Bush tax cuts originally passed in 2001 and 2003 while also raising tax rates on the highest income levels. The bill was passed in the Senate by a 89 - 8 vote on January 1, 2013.[36]


Barbara Boxer

After beginning the 113th Congress working jointly in the Senate as an unlikely duo, in September 2013 Barbara Boxer and Vitter ended their working relationship.[37]

Vitter accused Boxer of “bribery,” while she responded that Vitter is demeaning the Senate, all as part of a complex feud over Obamacare that has revived ghosts of Vitter’s prostitution scandal.[37] The ending of the bi-partisan relationship between the two could have profound consequences for public policy.[37]

Despite the duos disagreement on major issues, they were able to pass a water infrastructure bill through the Senate, and were even seen chatting amiably.[37]

“A good bipartisan news story,” they echoed each other in a March 2013 conference call introducing their water bill. When it coasted through the Senate a couple of months later, Boxer said that “when it comes to the infrastructure of our country, we come together.”[37]

Since then, the relationship between Vitter and Boxer has continued to deteriorate. Vitter, who has used his committee position to separate himself from “official Washington,” helped organize a spring boycott on new Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, upsetting Boxer, who argued he and other Republicans “take the side of the polluters.”[37]

Vitter's September 2013 amendment added an energy bill that would end Obamacare subsidies for lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides sparked an ugly bout of name calling and finger-pointing. In response, Democratic lawmakers drafted an amendment that would dig up Vitter’s past by denying senators Obamacare subsidies given “probable cause” they solicited prostitutes, an explicit reference to Vitter’s ties to the “D.C. Madam” that surfaced in 2007.[37]

Vitter then insisted for an ethics investigation into Harry Reid and Boxer, who is the chairwoman of the Select Committee on Ethics. “Senator Reid and Boxer have apparently led an effort to employ political scare tactics, personal attacks and threats that would affect each Senator’s personal finances (i.e. bribery),” Vitter wrote in his letter requesting an investigation.[37]

Urge for Ethics probe investigation

Vitter called for an ethics probe of Harry Reid and Barbara Boxer on September 13, 2013, after a proposed Democratic amendment barring senators who have been investigated for soliciting prostitutes from receiving health insurance was released.[38][39]

Without mentioning prostitution explicitly, Vitter accused the Democratic senators of violating rules for "proposing and circulating through the press legislation that ties Members’ personal healthcare benefits to their performance of specific acts and votes."[38] He added that the move constituted "attempted bribery, and the exact sort of behavior that the Senate Ethics Committee has previously condemned."[38]

"Senator Vitter has manufactured a bizarre and phony attack that demeans the Senate," said Boxer, who chairs the Ethics Committee.[38]

"Senator Vitter's charges are absurd and baseless," said Kristen Orthman, a spokeswoman for Reid. "This is nothing more than Senator Vitter's desperate attempt to change the subject from his previous ethics issues."[38]

The proposed legislation would make any senator who a congressional ethics panel has "probable cause" to believe solicited prostitutes ineligible for congressional health insurance. A Democratic aide estimated the federal government has spent $112,624.88 on its share of Vitter's premiums since 1999, when he first entered Congress, assuming the feds have paid 75 percent of a standard HMO plan.[38]

The dispute began when Vitter demanded a vote on an amendment repealing a rule allowing the federal government to continue to pay its portion of lawmakers' and aides' premiums in the exchanges under the Affordable Care Act. Democrats responded by bringing up Vitter's role in the "D.C. Madam" scandal, when he was revealed to be a client of a prostitution service in 2007.[38]

Ethics complaint dismissed

On September 24, 2013, the Senate Ethics Committee, chaired by Barbara Boxer, dismissed Vitter's complaint and said that no further action will be taken.[40]

“The complaint offers no concrete information to support the allegation that Sen. Reid, Sen. Boxer, or their staffs were involved with the legislative language drafted by unknown parties that you described,” stated John Sassaman, chief counsel and staff director for the panel. “Further, an inquiry involving speculation over draft legislative language not part of any bill or any proceedings would be unprecedented.”

Boxer’s spokesman said she was not responsible for the dismissal.

Senator Boxer chose not to be involved in the decision-making process regarding this complaint,” said spokesman Zachary Coile.[40]

Second ethics complaint filed

Vitter filed a second complaint with the Senate ethics committee on September 26, 2013, seeking further investigation into his claim that Democrats used “bribery” to build opposition to a health care proposal he sponsored.[41]

The committee previously dismissed Vitter’s initial complaint just two days prior, saying there was “no concrete information” to support his claims that Barbara Boxer and Harry Reid were involved in drafting legislation aimed at penalizing lawmakers who support Vitter’s health care measure.[42]

Prostitution scandal

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," convicted by the U.S. government for running a prostitution service. Hustler identified the phone number and contacted Vitter's office to ask about his connection to Palfrey.[43][4] The following day, Vitter issued a written statement in which he took responsibility for his sin and asked for forgiveness.[4] On July 16, 2007, after a week of self-imposed seclusion, Vitter emerged and called a news conference. Standing next to his wife, Vitter asked the public for forgiveness.[3][44]


Louisiana's 5th special election

U.S. Sen. Vitter has said will not be endorsing a candidate in the 2013 special election for the 5th District congressional seat.[45] Vitter said on August 16, 2013, that he often does not get involved in races that have “two or more significant Republicans.”[45]



Vitter is running for Governor of Louisiana in 2015. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) is term limited and cannot run.[46]

In a statement released to the Associated Press in December 2013, Vitter said he would make a decision by January 2014.[47] On January 21, 2014 Vitter released campaign website and a video in which he said “I believe that as our next governor I can have a bigger impact addressing the unique challenges and opportunities that we face in Louisiana."[48]

Vitter to run for Governor of Louisiana


On November 2, 2010, Vitter (R) won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Charlie Melancon (D), Michael Karlton Brown (I), R. A. "Skip" Galan (I), Milton Gordon (I), Sam Houston Melton, Jr. (I), Randall Todd Hayes (L), William R. McShan (Reform), Michael Lane "Mike" Spears (I), Ernest D. Woolon (I), William Robert "Bob" Lang, Jr. (I) and Thomas G. "Tommy" LaFarge (I) in the general election.[49]

U.S. Senate, Louisiana General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDavid Vitter Incumbent 56.6% 715,415
     Democratic Charlie Melancon 37.7% 476,572
     Independent Michael Karlton Brown 0.8% 9,973
     Independent R. A. "Skip" Galan 0.6% 7,474
     Independent Milton Gordon 0.4% 4,810
     Independent Sam Houston Melton, Jr. 0.3% 3,780
     Libertarian Randall Todd Hayes 1.1% 13,957
     Reform William R. McShan 0.5% 5,879
     Independent Michael Lane "Mike" Spears 0.7% 9,190
     Independent Ernest D. Woolon 0.6% 8,167
     Independent William Robert "Bob" Lang, Jr. 0.5% 5,734
     Independent Thomas G. "Tommy" LaFarge 0.3% 4,043
Total Votes 1,264,994

Full history

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Vitter is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Vitter raised a total of $23,290,537 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 1, 2013.[51]

David Vitter's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2010 U.S. Senate (Louisiana) Won $12,560,392
2004 U.S. Senate (Louisiana) Won $7,192,566
2002 U.S. House (Louisiana, District 1) Won $1,397,268
2000 U.S. House (Louisiana, District 1) Won $2,140,311
Grand Total Raised $23,290,537


Super PAC petition

Lawyers for the Fund for Louisiana's Future, the super PAC created to support Vitter, said in December 2013 that Louisiana's Board of Ethics does not have a choice but to grant its request to end enforcement of Louisiana's $100,000 limit on independent committee donations.[52]

The group, along with other super PACs, argues that the Supreme Court's 2010 ruling that equated spending on independent political expenditures with free speech, and a follow-up ruling by a Washington D.C. appeals court, makes it clear that such limits are unconstitutional.[52]

If the ethics board agrees, the result could be million-dollar contributions to campaign committees in Louisiana.[53]

"The writing is on the wall," said Paul Ryan, a lawyer for the Campaign Legal Center. Still, Ryan said, the Louisiana ethics board, which could put the Fund for Louisiana's request on its January agenda, might well want to consider whether to wait for the Louisiana Legislature to act before unilaterally deciding not to enforce the state's 1991 law that established the $100,000 giving limit every four years.[53]

In January 2014, it announced that the super PAC raised $1.5 million in 2013.[54]

Justin Bieber concert fundraiser

On August 3, 2013, Vitter posted an invitation to join him at a Justin Bieber concert with his family.[55][56][57][58] Campaign donors were invited to join Vitter, his two teenage daughters, and his 11-year-old son at the August 2013 show, according to the invitation. The experience was billed as “a family night.”[58]

According to an invitation, Vitter was asking $1,000 per person or PAC for the chance to join him and his children "for a family night at the Justin Bieber concert."[58][57][55]

The event was hosted by a campaign committee, David Vitter for Senate.

Louisiana Bayou Weekend

The concert fundraiser came on the tails of another unique campaign fundraiser in May 2013 when Vitter was part of a $5,000-per-person "Louisiana Bayou Weekend" that featured an alligator hunt.[59] Potential contributors and a few press outlets were given an invitation for a $5,000-per-person "Louisiana Bayou Weekend."[59][60]

"Save your place for this exciting adventure in swamps and bayous of south Louisiana!" the flyer said.[59]

The three-day event — which also included Cajun cooking and an "Airboat Swamp Tour" — was sponsored by The Fund for Louisiana's Future.[59]


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Vitter is a "rank-and-file Republican," as of June 21, 2013.[61]

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.[62]

Vitter most often votes with:

Vitter least often votes with:

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Vitter paid his congressional staff a total of $2,396,031 in 2011. He ranked 20th on the list of the lowest paid Republican senatorial staff salaries and ranked 27th overall of the lowest paid senatorial staff salaries in 2011. Overall, Louisiana ranked 27th in average salary for senatorial staff. The average U.S. Senate congressional staff was paid $2,529,141.70 in fiscal year 2011.[63]

Net worth

See also: Net Worth of United States Senators and Representatives

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Vitter's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $830,055 and $2,436,000. That averages to $1,633,027.50, which is lower than the average net worth of Republican senators in 2012 of $6,956,438.47. Vitter ranked as the 57th most wealthy senator in 2012.[64]

David Vitter Yearly Net Worth
YearAvg. Net Worth% Difference from previous year

National Journal vote ratings

See also: National Journal vote ratings

Each year, National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted, as compared to other members, in the previous year. More information about the analysis process can be found on the vote ratings page.


Vitter ranked 6th in the conservative rankings in 2012.[65]


Vitter ranked 6th in the conservative rankings in 2011.[66]

Voting with party


Vitter voted with the Republican Party 86.3% of the time, which ranked 31st among the 46 Senate Republican members as of June 2013.[67]


Vitter lives in Metairie, Louisiana, with his wife, Wendy. They have four children.[68]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term David + Vitter + Louisiana + Senate

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

David Vitter News Feed

  • Loading...

See also

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Biographical Guide to Members of Congress, "David Vitter," accessed October 22, 2011
  2. Politico, "David Vitter stokes buzz about governor bid," accessed May 22, 2013
  3. 3.0 3.1 Fox News, "New Orleans' Madam Says Sen. David Vitter Used Her Brothel," accessed July 23, 2013
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 ABC News, "‘Hustler’ Call May Have Prompted Vitter Admission," accessed July 23, 2013
  5. Congressional Quarterly, "Senate Committee List," accessed January 22, 2013
  6. United States Senate, "Committee Assignments," accessed March 29, 2014
  7. U.S. Senate Official Website, "Committee Assignments," accessed October 22, 2011
  8. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  9. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 NOLA.com, "David Vitter urges American response in Syria," accessed August 27, 2013
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 NOLA.com, "Sen. David Vitter says he'll vote no on Syria military resolution," accessed September 5, 2013
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 Project Votesmart, "David Vitter Key Votes," accessed October 17, 2013
  13. CNN, "Rand Paul says he's heard from White House after filibuster," March 7, 2013
  14. USA Today, "Rand Paul filibuster ranks among Senate's longest," March 7, 2013
  15. ABC News, "Rand Paul wins applause from GOP and liberals," March 7, 2013
  16. Breitbart, "AWOL: Meet the GOP senators who refused to stand with Rand," March 7, 2013
  17. Politico, "Rand Paul filibuster blasted by Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham," March 7, 2013
  18. Washington Post, "Eric Holder responds to Rand Paul with ‘no’," March 7, 2013
  19. Senate.gov, "H.R. 2642 (Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013)," accessed February 12, 2014
  20. New York Times, "Senate Passes Long-Stalled Farm Bill, With Clear Winners and Losers," accessed February 12, 2014
  21. 21.0 21.1 Politico, "Senate approves $1.1 trillion spending bill," accessed January 20, 2014
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 U.S. Senate, "January 16 Vote," accessed January 20, 2014
  23. Roll Call, "House Passes $1.1 Trillion Omnibus," accessed January 20, 2014
  24. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  25. Senate.gov, "H.R. 2775 As Amended," accessed October 31, 2013
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 NOLA.com, "David Vitter signs GOP letter threatening government shutdown without repeal of ObamaCare," accessed August 19, 2013
  27. 27.0 27.1 CBS News, "Vitter: I Support Government Shutdown Rather Than Paying For ‘Obamacare’," accessed August 19, 2013
  28. 28.0 28.1 NOLA.com, "Sen. David Vitter stars in new Citizens United ad alleging special treatment for Congress," accessed November 6, 2013
  29. Congress.gov, "S.1497 - No Exemption for Washington from Obamacare Act," accessed October 15, 2013
  30. National Review Online, "The Obamacare Non-Exemption," accessed October 15, 2013
  31. Regulations.gov, "Federal Employees Health Benefits Program: Members of Congress and Congressional Staff," accessed October 2, 2013
  32. Forbes, "Congressmen Rejoice! Govt. To Subsidize Their Health Insurance Through Obamacare's Exchanges," accessed August 2, 2013
  33. 33.0 33.1 33.2 33.3 Politico, "Ted Cruz, David Vitter clash on Obamacare exemption," accessed September 25, 2013
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 Shreveport Times, "Vitter: Hold EBT card violators for theft, fraud," accessed November 4, 2013
  35. Politico, "Report: David Vitter, Alan Grayson introduce most bills," accessed January 9, 2014
  36. U.S. Senate, "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff," accessed January 4, 2013
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 37.3 37.4 37.5 37.6 37.7 Politico, "Barbara Boxer-David Vitter feud draws blood," accessed September 17, 2013
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 38.3 38.4 38.5 38.6 Huffington Post, "David Vitter Calls For Ethics Probe Of Colleagues After Being Targeted By Prostitution Amendment," accessed September 16, 2013
  39. Politico, "David Vitter wants ethics probe of Harry Reid, Barbara Boxer," accessed September 16, 2013
  40. 40.0 40.1 Politico, "David Vitter’s ethics complaint dismissed," accessed September 25, 2013
  41. name="secondcomplaint">My Desert, "Barbara Boxer criticizes David Vitter as 2nd complaint filed," accessed September 27, 2013
  42. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named secondcomplaint
  43. NY Times, "Woman Convicted in Washington Escort Case," accessed July 23, 2013
  44. CNN.com, "Hustler says it revealed senator's link to escort service," accessed July 23, 2013
  45. 45.0 45.1 The Town Talk, "Sen. Vitter won't endorse in 5th District race," accessed August 19, 2013
  46. Politico, "David Vitter stokes buzz about governor bid," accessed May 22, 2013
  47. AP News, "Vitter to decide on governor's race by January," accessed December 3, 2013
  48. Politico, "David Vitter to run for Louisiana governor in 2015," accessed January 21, 2014
  49. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed July 4, 2013
  50. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2004," accessed March 28, 2013
  51. Open Secrets, "David Vitter," accessed May 1, 2013
  52. 52.0 52.1 NOLA.com, "Super PAC backing Sen. David Vitter says state has no choice, must lift $100,000 contribution limit," accessed December 11, 2013
  53. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named lawyerfund
  54. Washington Post, "Pro-Vitter super PAC raises $1.5 million," accessed January 9, 2014
  55. 55.0 55.1 David Vitter, "Justin Bieber Concert," accessed August 5, 2013
  56. Yahoo News, "For $1,000, You Can Go See Justin Bieber With Sen. David Vitter and His Family," accessed August 5, 2013
  57. 57.0 57.1 American Banker, "David Vitter: Senator by Day, Belieber by Night," accessed August 5, 2013
  58. 58.0 58.1 58.2 National Journal, "For a Campaign Contribution, campaign supporters were invited to Can Go to a Justin Bieber Concert with Sen. David Vitter," accessed August 5, 2013
  59. 59.0 59.1 59.2 59.3 American Banker, "Sen. Vitter Wants to Rein In Big Banks — And Alligators," accessed August 5, 2013
  60. Washington Post, "Last call to hunt gators with Sen. David Vitter," accessed August 5, 2013
  61. GovTrack, "David Vitter," accessed June 21, 2013
  62. OpenCongress, "Rep. David Vitter," accessed August 2, 2013
  63. LegiStorm, "David Vitter," accessed 2012
  64. OpenSecrets.org, "David Vitter (R-LA), 2012," accessed February 18, 2014
  65. National Journal, "TABLE: House Liberal Scores by Issue Area," accessed February 26, 2013
  66. National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," accessed February 23, 2012
  67. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  68. Official Website of Senator David Vitter, "Biography," accessed October 22, 2011
Political offices
Preceded by
John B. Breaux
U.S. Senate - Louisiana
Succeeded by
Preceded by
U.S. House - Louisiana District 1
Succeeded by
Steve Scalise (R)
Preceded by
Louisiana House of Representatives
Succeeded by