Politics | Lawsuits, morals charges muddy Traylor campaign Baton Rouge, LA
If it weren’t so scummy, this story would be hilarious.
Chet Traylor is running as a candidate for State Sen from the Winnsboro area of Louisiana (North Louisiana, a whole different world from South Louisiana).
He has brought up “morals” issues regarding his opponent, David Vitter, whose association with prostitutes is known.
As it turns out, Traylor had an affair years ago with the wife of Noble Ellington, who is in State government as a Representative from that area. So Traylor’s “morals” accusations against Vitter might be something he wants to reconsider using during the campaign.
Traylor eventually married Ellington’s wife, who then died.
Traylor is NOW involved in an affair with the wife of Noble Ellington’s son.
Add to that, the Ellingtons are in a fight with Traylor over the estate of the woman who died who was first Ellington’s wife, then Traylor’s wife. The Ellington’s are administrators of her estate, but Traylor holds bank accounts and properties that are part of the estate.
Did you follow all of that?
What a mess.
WASHINGTON — Noble Ellington remembers when he met Chet Traylor in Winnsboro 35 years ago.
Ellington and his wife, Peggy McDowell, helped with campaigns that eventually took Traylor to the top of the Louisiana justice world: a seat on the state Supreme Court.
But Ellington, now a Democratic state representative from Winnsboro, said the relationship crumbled about 13 years ago when Traylor and his wife began an affair.
“He liked my wife,” said Ellington, a cotton merchant. “Was he involved with my wife? Yes. The infidelity part is a lack of morals.”
Traylor, of Monroe, raised the morals issue in his challenge to incumbent U.S. Sen. David Vitter in the Aug. 28 Republican primary. The Nov. 2 general election for the U.S. Senate seat will pit the winners of the party primaries and candidates without party affiliations.
Traylor, 64, also has to defend himself this week because a court battle he is involved with that includes Ellington’s two sons surfaced.
The 5th Judicial District Court in Winnsboro has set an Aug. 2 date for a lawsuit filed against Traylor by Noble Ellington III and Ryan Ellington. Traylor is now in a relationship with Ryan Ellington’s estranged wife.
Through it all, Traylor has denied the adultery claim, saying that McDowell — who died last year after their 12-year marriage — and he started their relationship after she was separated from Ellington. And he said his current relationship occurred after Ryan Ellington and his wife, Denise Lively, separated.
“I’ve done nothing that I feel that I’m ashamed of,” Traylor said.
Additional focus on the situation is heightened by Traylor’s Senate candidacy. In announcing his bid two weeks ago, Traylor took a shot at Vitter, of Metairie. In 2007, Vitter was forced to acknowledge that he committed a “serious sin” after his phone number was found on the client list of a high-priced Washington prostitution ring.
In announcing his candidacy, Traylor said Vitter’s scandal made him a less effective senator for Louisiana.
Joshua Stockley, a political science professor with the University of Louisiana at Monroe, said Traylor’s situation doesn’t trump Vitter’s but could give voters pause.
“It’s definitely not going to help,” Stockley said. “If he wants to take the high road, he doesn’t have the clear advantage over Vitter.”