Republican Sen. David Vitter won't stop bashing Obamacare on the Senate floor this week, and that's annoyed top Democrats Barbara Boxer and Harry Reid. Vitter demanded a vote on his Obamacare amendment to an unrelated energy and efficiency bill. It's too bad for Vitter that Reid and Boxer remember the year 2007 — they reportedly floated legislation right back that's intended to remind everyone of Vitter's history with prostitutes.
Vitter's amendment would have gotten rid of government contributions that help cover federal workers' health care coverage. According to the National Journal, Reid and Boxer floated legislation that "would ban senators from getting government contributions for their health insurance costs if there is 'probable cause' they solicited prostitutes." In 2007, Vitter got embarrassingly caught up in the "D.C. Madam" scandal when his phone number surfaced during an investigation of a D.C. prostitution ring. He addressed the issue by saying he committed a "very serious sin."
Vitter told Politico that Reid is acting like an "old-time Vegas mafia thug." Vitter's now calling for an ethics investigation focusing on another draft of Reid and Boxer's legislation. That draft proposes to deny health insurance coverage to those who vote for Vitter's Obamacare amendment — Vitter says that's bribery. As it happens, Boxer is the Chairman of the ethics committee.
Update, Monday 2:43 pm: Boxer's office emailed The Atlantic Wire to note that Boxer "rejects the claims [Vitter] made in his letter" to the Ethics committee.
Vitter noted that Boxer should be stripped of her membership on the committee if she's found guilty. Boxer told the National Journal late Friday, "Senator Vitter has manufactured a bizarre and phony attack that demeans the Senate." And they say nothing gets done in Congress.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.