WASHINGTON -- Sen. David Vitter's spokesman on Friday denied the Louisiana Republican was responsible for sending and quickly deleting a message from the senator's official Twitter account to a young woman on Thursday night.
In attempting to explain a Gawker.com report on the tweet, Joel DiGrado, Vitter's spokesman, told The Huffington Post that Vitter "never personally tweets -- in fact, he doesn't even have the Twitter account set up on his Blackberry."
The tweet was sent to the Twitter handle @LuvMy_Kisses, an account Gawker reported as belonging to 20-year-old Daysha Scott, a student who appears to hail from Vitter's hometown of New Orleans. The tweet contained no text.
Scott, when asked about the exchange on Friday, replied, "I know something you don't know," according to Gawker. She later deleted a long string of her own Tweets, which were captured by Gawker.
The Tweet from Vitter's account to Scott was captured by The Sunlight Foundation's new Politwoops software, which catalogs tweets erased by members of Congress.
DiGrado flatly denied that the senator was responsible for the Tweet.
"We've contacted Twitter and the staff involved in tweeting," DiGrado said. "The only explanation would seem to be an inadvertent staff button hit, perhaps related to the fact that, at various times the senator's account has automatically followed whoever follows his account."
For other lawmakers, an episode such as this might easily be explained away. But Vitter's history is not so easily explained.
In 2009, Vitter's phone number was discovered among the client list of Debra Jean Palfrey, better known as the DC Madam. Under pressure from the media, Vitter issued a statement admitting to "a very serious sin in my past for which I am, of course, completely responsible." He said the sins occurred "several years ago," and that he had since "asked for and received forgiveness from God and my wife."
Palfrey wasn't the only madam who claimed to be familiar with Vitter. In 2007, a madam in New Orleans said she had counted Vitter as a client in the 1990s. The woman, Jeanette Maier, also described Vitter's alleged sexual preferences to a local TV station.
Vitter is not the first member of Congress whose spokesman has blamed an indiscreet tweet on technical problems. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) famously dragged out a sex scandal for weeks last year, during which he denied having sent explicit photos of himself to women via Twitter. Weiner initially blamed Internet hackers, before it was ultimately revealed that both the photos and the account belonged to the congressman, who resigned soon afterward.