Vance McAllister, the so-called "Kissing Congressman" from Louisiana has been laying low the past couple of weeks, but he just popped up to tell his hometown paper that he'll fill out his term but will not seek reelection. I said before that political mistresses tend to pay a higher price than the office-holding cheaters, but looks like a pretty spectacular crash and burn of this guy's political career. He won the seat in a special election in November of last year and would have faced a Republican primary this November, so he's only going to be able to manage a little more than a year in office. This is after spending more than $400,000 of his own money getting elected in the first place.
The picture up top is of him and his wife at the airport waiting to catch a flight back to Washington.
Kelly McAllister said the couples' marriage remains intact.
"I'm behind him 100 percent," she said.
"Our family is together and better and stronger than we were before," the congressman said.
McAllister said his wife decided to accompany him to Washington "because she knows it's going to be a firestorm when I get there and she didn't want me to face it alone."
Understandable why she wouldn't want to rush into a divorce and try to single parent their five(!) young children, who are apparently not coming along to DC. They've probably got school and such, and I assume the grandparents'll be watching them. Meanwhile, Kelly and Vance probably have hell of counseling sessions to get through, and I also suspect she's sticking so close from sheer lack of trust in that oily, flat-headed bastard.
One of my earlier assumptions was that he knows who released the smoochy-smooch footage to the press, and turns out there's a funny story associated with that as well. Pastor Danny Chance (nice pastor name, btw) came in out of left field and announced that McAllister's district office manager was the leaker.
"I know who had a zip drive of that surveillance video, and that's all I have to testify of. Her name is Leah Gordon. She's the manager of the Monroe office, " Chance said in a phone interview with KNOE 8 News.
Chance, who pastors Christian Life Church in Monroe, said that Gordon was a member of Christian Life Church several years ago. When asked why she was not a member or attending the church currently, he responded, "You'll have to ask her that."
Chance wouldn't elaborate why or how he knew Gordon had a zip drive with the video, but reiterated that she did have the video.
When asked about whether or not he knew if Gordon actually took the video with a cell phone Chance said, "I don't know who filmed it. I wasn't there. I know she had a zip drive of and showed it to people."
"I'm not taking up for the congressman; what he did was wrong, but I just feel like there is a conspiracy to bring Vance down and destroy him. For someone on his staff to do that is wrong."
He also managed to muddy up the water quite a bit, appearing to accuse a couple of state senators of being in on said conspiracy.
Chance said Gordon also spoke of taking the video to state Sen. Mike Walsworth (R) and Jonathan Johnson, who both worked for state Sen. Neil Riser (R), who ran against McAllister last year. They were running to fill the seat left vacant by former Rep. Rodney Alexander (R-LA) — who is also Gordon's former boss.
Both Walsworth and Johnson denied seeing the video before it was published online Monday by a local Louisiana newspaper.
"It's an absolute lie," Walsworth told the News-Star. "He knows it's not true. I can't believe a minister would outright lie like that. Maybe I didn't go to his church as often as he wanted. I didn't see that video until (Monday) like everybody else."
The pastor came back and responded
I have never accused Mike Walsworth of seeing that. I've never said that," Chance said. He went on, "I do know that Leah planned to take that video to Sen. Mike Walsworth. I have had a conversation with Mike. He and I ironed out our differences.
Lot of subtext here. First of all, was this really a zip drive with the video, or is this just an old church guy confusing one of those with a USB stick? I haven't even seen a zip disk since the late 90's. Also, I figure that though Gordon's not part of the flock anymore, she spilled the beans to a friend who is, and they ran the whole story back to Pastor Chance. Don't know why he was so quick to jump right into the middle of it though.