The Clarion-Ledger Editorial, 7/20/7

Louisiana Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter who championed family values and sanctity of marriage last week was outed as having patronized the call-girl services of “D.C. Madam” Deborah Jeanne Palfrey. It sent shock waves into Louisiana’s gubernatorial race and could harm Mississippi’s bid for Katrina relief.

$29 billion Katrina relief appropriation carved out of an Iraq war funding bill in 2005 by Mississippi Republican Sen. Thad Cochran, then chairman of the Senate Appropriation Committee, gave Mississippi $5.1 billion and Louisiana $6.2 billion for housing grants. It was estimated 106,000 homes would be eligible in Louisiana, but as of June 1, 140,000 applications had been received, requiring $2.9 billion more.

Since Democrats took control of Congress in 2006, Cochran is no longer Appropriation chairman, and focus to secure Katrina relief has shifted to Louisiana’s senior senator, Democrat Mary Landrieu.