The Norman Transcript

Nation/World

April 13, 2014

Disappointment, forgiveness mix in La.

MONROE, La. — To Louisiana voters accustomed to tawdry scandals involving elected officials, disappointment with an eye toward forgiveness is the prevailing sentiment about their new congressman, caught on video embracing an aide married to one of his friends.

Republican Vance McAllister was a wealthy businessman without prior political experience when he won a special election last fall, trouncing his party’s establishment candidate in a conservative district that comprises northeast Louisiana.

While some Republicans have urged the faith-and-family politician to resign, McAllister has said he will respect the verdict of his constituents this fall, when he seeks a full two-year term.

McAllister’s “main thing now is to get straight with his family,” said Jackie Coleman, a retired law enforcement officer from Olla, south of Monroe.

“Then, this should be over,” said Coleman, one of McAllister’s constituents interviewed by The Associated Press.

Many are as eager to speculate how a local newspaper got video of McAllister kissing Melissa Peacock as they are to offer an opinion about what it shows.

There’s been little subtlety in the response from Republican powers.

Gov. Bobby Jindal said he should quit. So did the state Republican chairman, who said McAllister had become an “embarrassment.”

U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said McAllister has “decisions that he has to make.”

The closest thing to support McAllister has found among his colleagues are statements of concern for his wife and five children.

Many voters seem more inclined to forgiveness.

Wearing a T-shirt from her Baptist church in the community of Start, Pamela Nolan made it clear she abhors marital infidelity of any kind.

But, the hospital pharmacist added, “What laws has he broken? What trust has he violated, other than his wife’s? ... The next election should be the determinant of how we feel about it.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World
  • Traps set in New Jersey lake while animal control searches for snake

    JEFFERSON, N.J. — Reports of a 16-foot-long exotic snake — possibly an anaconda — slithering through New Jersey’s largest lake have stoked fears among residents and led to searches and questions about what exactly is in the water....

    July 23, 2014

  • Airlines cancel air traffic after rocket attack

    JERUSALEM — A Hamas rocket exploded Tuesday near Israel’s main airport, prompting a ban on flights from the U.S. and many from Europe and Canada as aviation authorities responded to the shock of seeing a civilian jetliner shot down over ...

    July 23, 2014

  • Remains of victims from Malaysian airliner crash transported by train to Ukrainian controlled territory

    KHARKIV, Ukraine — A train bearing the dead from the downed Malaysian airliner reached Ukrainian government-held territory at long last Tuesday, but the pro-Russian separatists in control of the crash site showed little willingness to ...

    July 23, 2014

  • Contrarian’s case: Why the U.S. could be dragged down by struggling world economies?

    NEW YORK — Just as the U.S. economy is strengthening, other countries are threatening to drag it down....

    July 23, 2014

  • Dueling rulings: Courts split on health law

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s health care law is snarled in another big legal battle, with two federal appeals courts issuing contradictory rulings on a key financing issue within hours of each other Tuesday....

    July 23, 2014

  • Obama nominee pledges to ‘transform’ VA

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s choice to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs pledged Tuesday to transform the beleaguered agency, saying that “systematic failures” must be addressed....

    July 23, 2014

  • Friend is first convicted in Boston Marathon probe

    BOSTON — The conviction of a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev for impeding the investigation into the bombings has his lawyers wondering if anyone else who faces charges connected to the 2013 attack stands a ...

    July 23, 2014

  • Rebels release train with bodies from jet

    HRABOVE, Ukraine — Bowing to international pressure, pro-Moscow separatists released a train packed with bodies and handed over the black boxes from the downed Malaysia Airlines plane, four days after it plunged into rebel-held eastern ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Gaza death toll passes 560

    GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — A high-level attempt by the U.N. chief and the U.S. secretary of state to end deadly Israel-Hamas fighting was off to a rough start Monday: Gaza’s Hamas rulers signaled they won’t agree to an unconditional ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Perry sending Guard troops to border

    AUSTIN, Texas — Gov. Rick Perry is deploying up to 1,000 National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border over the next month to combat what he said Monday were criminals exploiting a surge of children pouring into the U.S. illegally. ...

    July 22, 2014