- Associated Press - Friday, August 21, 2015

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Former U.S. Rep. Vance McAllister, who lost his re-election bid last year after a cheating scandal, is trying to return to Louisiana politics.

Only this time, he’s set his sights lower than Congress.

McAllister, a Republican from Swartz, told the News-Star (https://tnsne.ws/1JaGYuT ) Friday that he intends to run for a state Senate seat representing northeast Louisiana. He’s seeking to oust two-term incumbent Mike Walsworth, a Republican from West Monroe.

The former congressman said Walsworth has been too closely allied with unpopular Gov. Bobby Jindal, who is running for president.

A self-made millionaire, McAllister surprised the political establishment when he won the 5th District congressional seat in 2013 in his first bid for elected office.

But months later a video surfaced showing the married congressman kissing a married member of his congressional staff. That cost him re-election in 2014. McAllister finished with 11 percent of the vote and didn’t make the runoff won by Republican doctor Ralph Abraham.

McAllister, who reconciled with his wife Kelly, said he considers the scandal “old news” and hopes voters will as well.

“I didn’t hide from it. I admitted my mistake and asked for forgiveness,” he said.

He added: “I know the issue will be there, but I don’t think it will be a focal point unless my opponent attacks me.”

Kelly McAllister said she supports her husband’s decision to run for the legislative seat representing District 33, which includes parts of Claiborne, Lincoln, Morehouse, Ouachita, Union and West Carroll parishes.

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Information from: The News-Star, https://www.thenewsstar.com


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