David Vitter's lawyer sending letters to Louisiana newspapers

The Louisiana senator wants to make sure his violent, woman-abusing former aide is painted in a good light

By Alex Pareene
August 27, 2010 7:45PM (UTC)
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U.S. Representative David Vitter of Louisiana speaks at the 2010 Southern Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana April 10, 2010. As many as 3,000 party activists are to attend the four-day conference, the most prominent gathering of Republicans outside of their presidential nominating conventions. REUTERS/Sean Gardner (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) (© Sean Gardner / Reuters)

David Vitter's lawyer is apparently writing angry letters to newspapers complaining that they wrote that his former aide Brent Furer slashed his girlfriend with a knife. Furer did slash his girlfriend with a knife, and Vitter continued to employ him despite this fact, but because Furer pleaded down to lesser charges, Vitter's lawyers apparently wants the papers to say he just "allegedly" slashed his girlfriend with a knife, while he was holding her hostage for 90 minutes.

The Monroe News Star and The Baton Rouge Advocate both received letters from an attorney for Senator Vitter, demanding clarifications or corrections on minor points. The purpose was apparently to make sure that readers know that despite the fact that Furer did attack his girlfriend, he managed to avoid actually going to jail for it, which I guess Vitter thinks is exculpatory.


The letters threaten no legal action, which is always a sure sign that it's just an attempt to bully a publication into pulling its punches. It's also stupid -- that kinda shit works, sometimes, on inexperienced bloggers, scared of fancy lawyer talk, but newspapers tend to know what they can legally say.

Alex Pareene

Alex Pareene writes about politics for Salon and is the author of "The Rude Guide to Mitt." Email him at apareene@salon.com and follow him on Twitter @pareene

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