Last year, when Sen. David Vitter became linked to a prostitution ring, there was speculation that he might face a primary challenge in 2010 from the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins though, at the time, Perkins sounded more than willing to forgive and forget:
“There’s room to make a mistake and come back,” said Tony Perkins, an evangelical former state representative and head of the Family Research Council in Washington. Perkins, who calls Vitter a personal friend, said he would vote for the senator if he proves he has “moved on.”
A few weeks back we noted that, when the new session of Congress opened, Vitter unleashed a flurry of bills designed to ingratiate himself to religious conservatives and seal off any primary attempt to attack him from the right.
And now, according to Bayou Buzz, Vitter was right to be concerned because Perkins has been approached by various high-level Republicans who want him to try and take Vitter out:
Secondly, Vitter is hoping to block off any potential challengers on the right. His particular concern is former Louisiana state representative Tony Perkins, who presently heads up the Family Research Council in Washington DC. Perkins ran for the U.S. Senate in 2002 as a protégé and former campaign manager of another senatorial candidate, Woody Jenkins. Perkins has built quite a conservative power base in Washington, and has become a major media spokesman for conservative family values. He has been approached by key national Republicans who feel Vitter may have an uphill fight in his reelection efforts, and some party operatives are trying to entice Perkins to come back home and take another run.