Above, full video, via the Arkansas Times, of Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel's Tuesday news conference, in which he answered questions about an "inappropriate" relationship with Hot Springs attorney Andrea Davis.
Noted: Davis' first full statement on the matter, via The Associated Press. In an email, she indicates that she's not happy with how McDaniel handled things yesterday, and hints that there's more to the story:
I was prepared to face the consequences of my actions upon his release of the truth. I am ready to move past my mistakes and I do not wish to deal with this set of circumstances repeatedly. Thus, if the matter is going to be disclosed then I want it disclosed in a candid and truthful manner. It is a colossal waste of time and energy otherwise. I hope he rethinks his answers and presents them as they occurred. I simply do not want to relive this in six months.
More reaction? The editorial writers at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette are not impressed, and question the necessity of the entire spectacle:
Our attorney general looked like any other married man caught in a compromising situation. That is, ridiculous. Sir, spare yourself. And if you can’t, have the decency to spare the rest of us.
Why should you want to mention this, uh, character lapse ever again? There’s no need to. Every time you appear on the campaign trail, it’ll be on everybody’s mind anyway. Why call even more attention to it? The less said about some things, the better.
John Brummett, in his snap judgment blog post, gives McDaniel props for not dragging his wife into the spotlight yesterday and thinks that, if everything the AG said holds true, he'll emerge a stronger and better candidate.
McDaniel said all the right things. He maybe laid on the love of wife and family a bit thick, but maybe that’s just penitence and humility, both of which he needs.
Blogger and politico Michael Cook (who you should remember once worked for possible Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill Halter) thinks that while McDaniel waited too long to meet the press about the affair, the AG sounded all the right notes. Still, damage has been done, some owing to first impressions:
Finally, the last piece of bad news is that this whole affair, no pun intended, is the first time many general election voters will have been introduced to the Attorney General. General election voters may have known of McDaniel, but never really knew him on a personal level since an AG is not as high-profile as a Governor or U.S. Senator. Now the first real introduction to him is news of his affair and as we all know in life, first impressions matter.
Meanwhile, Cook's conservative counterpart, Jason Tolbert, says McDaniel has set a high standard for himself. From here on out, he can't afford any slip-up:
Knowing he was caught, McDaniel has owned up and told us the truth, but insists there is nothing more. His campaign hinges on whether voters believe him.
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