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Update: Special Election Announced for Lott's Seat

UPDATE, 1:30 pm: Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) announced moments ago that a special election to fill the remaining four years on Sen. Trent Lott's (R) term will happen next November, effectively ruling out the possibility of a 90-day special election next spring.

"Pursuant to Mississippi law, specifically § 23-15-855 (1), of the Mississippi Code, once the resignation takes effect, I will call a Special Election for United States Senator to be held on November 4, 2008, being the regular general election day for the 2008 congressional elections," Barbour said in a statement.

In that same statement, he also ruled himself out as a candidate. "I will not be a candidate for Senator in the Special Election, and obviously, I won't appoint myself to fill the vacancy on an interim basis," Barbour said. Barbour will appoint a replacement for Lott within 10 days of the incumbent formally stepping down.

On the candidate front, both sides are jumbled at the moment. For Republicans, no one in the know seems to believe that Rep. Chip Pickering will be Barbour's choice to fill the vacancy. With Barbour not interested, Rep. Roger Wicker could well be the GOP pick. Wicker has held the 1st district since 1994 and ended September with $569,000 in the bank.

For Democrats, the Fix has learned that former state Attorney General Mike Moore -- Democrats' dream candidate -- is indeed interested in the contest and is considering a race. If Moore ran, he would likely clear the field. If not, former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove is the most oft-mentioned candidate. Rep. Gene Taylor (D) did not return a call seeking comment on his interest in a Senate bid but most national strategists believe he is a long shot. Former Rep. Mike Espy is also mentioned on the Democratic side but not considered a likely candidate.

UPDATE, 11:00 am: Under Mississippi election law, a 90 day special Senate election would be held if Lott formally resigns before the end of 2007.

But, that seems unlikely as a special election would put the seat in far more danger than if Barbour appointed a successor that would stand next November.

Since Lott has control over his formal resignation date, it seems likely he will wait until early January to make if official.

On the candidate front, an informed Republican source said Barbour's choice is very likely to not be Rep. Chip Pickering, although no other obvious alternative was offered.

As for the Democrats, former state attorney general Mike Moore is still the top pick but Rep. Gene Taylor and former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove are also mentioned.

The news that Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) will resign his seat by the end of the year creates a vacancy in the Magnolia State that aspiring pols have been waiting on for the past cycles.

The rules of succession remain somewhat blurry, although the most likely outcome is that Gov. Haley Barbour will appoint Lott's' replacement with a special election held next November to fill the unexpired four years on Lott's term.

For Republicans, the most oft-mentioned names are Reps. Roger Wicker and Chip Pickering. Both men once served as staffers for Lott and have deep ties in the state's Republican politics. Pickering has already announced he is leaving his House seat at the end of this term.

On the Democratic side, all eyes will be on former state Attorney General Mike Moore. By far the most popular Democratic politician in the state, Moore was rumored to be interested in a 2008 race if Sen. Thad Cochran (R) had retired and could well be convinced now to make a run for Lott's' vacant seat.

If not Moore, it's hard to see Democrats making a serious run at the seat. Mississippi is strong Republican country as President George W. Bush won it with 59 percent of the vote in 2004.

We'll keep updating this story as the day goes along.

By Eric Pianin  |  November 26, 2007; 1:55 PM ET
Categories:  Senate  
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Next: FixCam: Political Week In Preview


Heard that Lott is connected to a lot of shady deals and fears indictment in the future. He's a typical "New Age" Southerner - throughly deboned and neutered. Ole Mississip is in the control of Big Money, Mafia and unscrupulous punks of both so called "Parties". Hucakabee , same deal, full of platitudes and c*p.

Posted by: Vanguard | November 27, 2007 5:26 PM | Report abuse

buckidean - I stopped posting references for people like you when I discovered that you don't read them. You are one of the Clinton mob, obviously, and no amount of rational discussion will cause you to alter your lunatic beliefs.

But, remember, Hillary has a train of baggage a mile long and the amount of dirt that will simply bury this country in sh*t in the coming election will be YOUR fault. The only way Clinton can win is by depressing the votes of moderates and liberals who loath her. Every media outlet, every mainstream poll, shows that about half of all voters detest her and will not vote for her. Most, even liberals, will vote Republican if they have a choice of anyone but Romney - Huckabee, McCain, even Thompson and Gulianni all tie or lead her. Her campaign managers obviously want to run against Guliani because thye view him as having even more dirty laundry than her (hence, the London Times report about her campaign being a part of the various character assasinations of everyone but him). That stategy, may end up actually winning the general election, but will ultimately harm genuine progressives and Democratic candidates across the board. It will also so split the country that it will be all but ungovernable, except by even more dictitorial means used by Bush and his people. Make no mistake about it, Ms. Clinton cares for no one but Hillary, not the country, not liberals, not Democrats, not the poor and sick, and not the people of this country. If that is too harsh of an indictment for you to stomach, then you had better start thinking and reading about the gutter snipe you support. And, I said Hillary is WORSE than Bush and Pat Robertson; that is not hyperboly, either. She will say anything, do anything, be anything to achieve her blind ambitions for power and glory and money. You, on the other hand, are nothing more than road kill she will leave behind. Stop being a fool.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 27, 2007 3:55 PM | Report abuse

So Lott is gone. I'm betting Barbour appoints his former aid, Nogeff. He is being touted as a front runner for Pickering's seat. Now that Lott is retiring, I bet he gets appointed to the US senate seat by Barbour.

I'm not surprised that Barbour has no interest in the seat. He likely has interest in running for VP. As a former national committe chairman & now gov., he likely has the political connections to do so. Someone like Guiliani may need a guy like Barbour running with them to help balance out the ticket. F. Thompson or Huckabee may consider him. Romney may would consider Barbour. McCain would never pick him, if he picked a Southerner it would likely be SC gov. Stanford. Either way, Barbour would likely enjoy a VP run.

Posted by: bryant_flier2006 | November 27, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse


If Lott waits until January to resign he will be bound by the new law governing the time a senator must wait before becoming a lobbyist. Since Lott cannot get around that law (without penalty), shouldn't he resign in December? That way he can flout the state law without impunity because Governor Barbour will help him do it. The governor wants a Republican and will probably come up with a technicality to rationalize his decision to hold off the election until November of 08.

Posted by: tfburke19 | November 26, 2007 11:43 PM | Report abuse

GOD FORBID that PotatoChip doesn't get tapped. He needs to keep dancing under the tent with Borat. Yet if he is, and runs for the next general election, it'll be block voting as usual in my beloved, ridiculous state. My experience with his staff has been of total cluelessness and indifference. His people were the ONLY ones in the MS delegation that don't respond to letters, calls, etc. At least Lott knows how to respond to constituants.

Posted by: wdmounger | November 26, 2007 11:36 PM | Report abuse

CaptainJohn2525,don't you outrank melbrooks27 (even though everyone knows who he really is)? Well, maybe that is just not relevant. Lott and his wife should return to that lovely place down south and rebuild within the storm surge zone. Those of us who really live in DC will be happy to see him go back down to Dixie where his kind can live out a life of disgusting racist Republicanism.

Posted by: bk10 | November 26, 2007 10:13 PM | Report abuse

femalenick -

My tongue was firmly implanted in my cheek, but you could not see that from SF...


Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 26, 2007 9:46 PM | Report abuse

CaptainJohn2525 -
...on the other hand, there are people who can write and type and have never had an original thought in their you! You understand quite well what I am writing. Quit being a shallow, pompous a*s and discuss the points being made. Your rather obvious attempt to side track the debate are meaningless drivel.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 9:16 PM | Report abuse

or simply stupid.

Posted by: CaptainJohn2525 | November 26, 2007 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Ah, CaptainJohn2525, the regular posters here know exactly who I am. My company hires unemployed English majors just like you to fix my typo's on technical papers. I never bothered to learn to type...because only "the dummies" took those classes when I was in school in the 1960's and 70's. Everyone on the college track was discouraged from taking typing. Wihth the advent o computers, things have gotten a lot worse! When I lived in Sweden, the letters were differently located than they were in Germany...and France! The French, I think, purposefully re-arranged their keyboards to confuse Ameican's (unfortunately, I only lived in Paris for 6 months). In any event, I type by memorizing the keyboard and look at the keys instead of the "posting box". Sometimes the results are.....interesting...

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 8:18 PM | Report abuse

And, btw, milbrooks27, your last post using the term 'momen.' Really?

Is that both men and women, or are you just unable to write and/or type?

You should mos def find a way to lose (not loose) your anger and learn to 'verbilacate' your opinions.

Maybe we should have a voter's 'test' before we let people cast their ballot - and, no, milbroook, that's not a lottery ticket...

Posted by: CaptainJohn2525 | November 26, 2007 8:02 PM | Report abuse

YO. mibrooks27...

It MAY be that Hillary may 'lose' in 2008, but first I'd suggest you go back to school and take a class in basic grammar.

Your choice of 'loose' instead of the appropriate word 'lose' says volumes about your ability to read - as well as write (or is that 'right?').?

It's going to be a blue 2008 for you...

Posted by: CaptainJohn2525 | November 26, 2007 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Mark, Mark! I can't believe you asked this: " you think HRC reminds many divorced men of their ex-wives? That could be a real motivator."

To some degree, mibrooks27 is correct. There are indeed more women than men who hang onto their anger after divorce, although there's usually a good reason, e.g., their husbands left them for other women or after decades of helping them through school, etc., they're left behind.

Posted by: femalenick | November 26, 2007 6:59 PM | Report abuse

it's going to be hell to pay in the race for racist-in-chief of the GOP; Lott held the job, and did it well, since the resignation of strom thurmond; he will be missed every time funding for school lunches or medicaid is voted on.

he'll also be missed whenever it's time to waive a flag for a worthless military adventure, pad a defense bill, or grease a porker for some local yahoo!!

bye by swine!!

Posted by: charlesjacksonnyc | November 26, 2007 6:51 PM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin - The men I know don't think like that. In fact, most of the men I know are happily married family types. That type of thought process seems to be a "woman's thing". My wife and I have known a few divorced momen and they tend to relish/hang onto their anger about the failed marriage, use the children as weapons, berate the father to the kids, etc. If you read posts or talk to most men, they rarely dwell on failed relatiomships and certainly don't blame all women for theirs.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Even Robert Novak, the Traitor from the GOP side, says Sen. Lott is doing it to get away from the ban on lobbying.

In this very paper - which sadly pays the Traitor to write his column.

That said, the oncoming Blue Wave will make the 2006 Blue Wave look like just a two-footer compared to it's 6 to 8 foot majesty ... so not even Mississippi is safe in 2008.

Posted by: WillSeattle | November 26, 2007 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Those believing Lott's retirement before the end of the year has nothing to do with the New Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007 (S.1).... which as of January 1, 2008, places a two year cooling-of period restriction on former Senators who want to lobby.... must also believe in Santa and the tooth fairy.

Mark, agree about Biden and McCain. But, let's not lose hope yet....

Posted by: Truth_Hunter | November 26, 2007 5:51 PM | Report abuse

MikeB, do you think HRC reminds many divorced men of their ex-wives? That could be a real motivator.

bsimon, I am with you - it seems to me obvious that Biden and McCain are their parties' outstanding choices, but that the parties do not care one whit what I think.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 26, 2007 5:09 PM | Report abuse

JD - Simple, the soap opera/security moms like her along with the troubled souls of the radical feminist movement. All of them see her as a weapon of revenge to be used against "men" for past perceived wrongs. What is especially troubling about this is you get posts from complete nitwits about her being "a woman" therefore more thoughtful, or it being time for a woman president, or some lame post about an "ex", or another round of male bashing. Nothing about policy, not a word about what she actually stands for, just some emotional garbage about women sticking together. Clinton plays upon this rather well. She's flat out dangerous and most people have the sense to know it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 5:01 PM | Report abuse

JD asks
"If I'm a Democrat and the wind is still at my back for 08, why would I possibly want to run my slowest pony (HRC) in the race?"

Great question. But I don't understand the partisans of either party that seem to habitually vote for deficient candidates.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 4:50 PM | Report abuse

bsimon, bokonon13 - What you don't mention is that this is a Zogby poll, widely regarded as the most accurate and predictive. Nonetheless, a new ABC poll is showing the same results. Clinton is droppping, her negatives increasing, and her ability to win in a general election disappearing. At the same time, her core supporters seem to be even more fanatical in their support. So, she might just win the nomination and lead the DNC off a cliff. What worries me about this is that she looses to a complete turkey like Romney! As more questions arise about her past, I can see someone like him simply crushing her. This is about what you can expect when corporate and special interest money runs our electoral process.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 4:38 PM | Report abuse

If I'm a Democrat and the wind is still at my back for 08 (although so much depends on what happens with the surge), why would I possibly want to run my slowest pony (HRC) in the race?

Especially when so much of the core Dem constituency (liberals) hate so many of the positions she has taken, including Iraq, NAFTA, etc?

Posted by: JD | November 26, 2007 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Now she realizes she has to fight for the nomination, no coronation in sight...Hillary Clinton's campaign blasted rival Barack Obama over the distribution of money by the Illinois senator's leadership political action committee, Hopefund.

"Whatever happened to the confident frontrunner who said she wouldnt attack other Democrats just two weeks ago?" spokesman Bill Burton said in a release. "The latest personal attack from Hillary Clinton is a completely false attempt to misrepresent Barack Obamas full disclosure of his campaign finances.

"Senator Obama's commitment to disclosure is one that Hillary Clinton does not share, and until Senator Clinton is willing to make this commitment -- by disclosing her White House records, the list of donors to her husbands presidential library, how much her bundlers raise, and releasing her personal tax returns to the public -- she's not really in a position to point fingers at others.",2933,312933,00.html

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | November 26, 2007 4:31 PM | Report abuse

bok writes
"Reuters has Hillary losing to each of her Republican rivals, while Obama and Edwards still poll better. The facts on the ground SEEM to be changing."

This bears watching. While it matches what I've expected, I'm curious to see if Dem primary voters put much stock in such polls, or continue to do their own thing. I expect, as time passes & people start paying more attention, her national numbers will continue to drop, to the benefit of various rivals. Biden & Richardson have to work to stay alive past Iowa.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 4:31 PM | Report abuse

boko, thanks for the link...very interesting poll results. I find it an especially remarkable turnaround, since only 4 months ago, Hillary was leading in the polls against all of the Rs.

Now, "Clinton trails Republican candidates Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, Fred Thompson, John McCain and Mike Huckabee by three to five percentage points in the direct matches.

In July, she narrowly led McCain, and held a five-point lead over former New York Mayor Giuliani, a six-point lead over former Tennessee Sen. Thompson and a 10-point lead over former Massachusetts Gov. Romney."

(margin of error 1%) pretty amazing. Even against Romney her numbers have tanked.

I guess the curtain has finally been pulled back and voters cvan now see the truth about Hillary Clinton, the waffler, hyper-consultant driven and over-managed fraud that she is. It's about time.

And this 'mindless geriatric', "nanderthal" "frat boy" is ecstatic to see the result of giving Clinton enough rope to hang herself. It didn't take much really, just a couple questions and non-answers a D debate is all it took. Go Repubs!

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | November 26, 2007 4:25 PM | Report abuse

The GOP is in big trouble if Lott's Miss. Senate seat is perceived to be in danger. That is beyond pathetic.

Posted by: parkerfl | November 26, 2007 4:13 PM | Report abuse

I take that back, I should say "SEEM to be changing." I don't want that to sound like I was posting with an anti-Hillary chip on my shoulder - just saw that on Yahoo and thought others might find it interesting as well.

Posted by: bokonon13 | November 26, 2007 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Well, this from Reuters has Hillary losing to each of her Republican rivals, while Obama and Edwards still poll better. The facts on the ground seem to be changing.

Posted by: bokonon13 | November 26, 2007 4:05 PM | Report abuse

mark_in_austinl claudia - I have never made any bones about disliking Clinton. I think she is the weakest candidate trhat the Democrats could possible run. However, a long time ago, I predicted that all sortf of old dirt would be dug about about Hillary and Bill, that all of those never answered scandles would rise up again, and create a huge mess. That **IS** happening and all of those stories will end up on CNN, FOX, ABC, NBC, etc. etc. and millions of people will read them and sensably conclude that there is something to them. Essentially, Hillary Clinton is the DNC's worst enemy. She is bound to loose and will likely take a number of Democrats down with her.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 3:58 PM | Report abuse

'And, if you think the voting public will elect a lesbian, you're nuts.'

The voting public has elected several lesbians, Mike. Along with lots of gay men, most of them Republican. Not to be president, but who knows. In time, who knows. If this were really true about Hillary,it would have all come out before this, when Ken Starr spent $70 million taxpayer dollars throwing every piece of slime he could find, invent, or lie about to bring them down.

The Rs spent 10 years sliming the Clintons. There weill be no new revelations.

lart, you forgot to mention that milllions of Iraqis have fled the country and are refugees -- another reason why sectarian violence is down.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Jenn2 - You're just being delussional if you don't think these stories aren't going to hit Amercian newspapers. Look, I know you don't like it, but there is sooooo much smoke here, that you have got to figure on a fire being in there somewhere. And, if you think the voting public will elect a lesbian, you're nuts.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

MS has never sent a woman to Congress. It would be interesting to see if Barbour would appoint outgoing LG Amy Tuck (R) to the seat. I would think she'd be an attractive candidate and it would also avoid having to hold a special election for a US House seat, which would inevitably happen if Pickering or Wicker were selected. What do people think?

Posted by: chrisdonn102385 | November 26, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Well maybe I'm given to a tad of hyperbole, Mark, but taken together, the R candidates are a frighteningly loony and irresponsible bunch.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 3:33 PM | Report abuse

The level of violence in Iraq has declined because ethnic cleansing has mostly separated the groups trying to kill each other. The "surge" just put more Americans in harm's way. Looking at casualties since the beginning of the surge, a lot of young Americans have died needlessly, after the voters had gotten tired of the administration's lies. One month of relative calm does not excuse the sharp increase in casualties this year.

Posted by: lartfromabove | November 26, 2007 3:31 PM | Report abuse


'So I am announcing today that I will be retiring from the Senate by the end of the year. '

Trent Lott

Found out the Flynt story is another R, who will be stepping down, still to be announced. Trent is mos def about lobbying rules.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Chris, little surprised you're not mentioning the RUMINT on this, that he's going to avoid the 2 yr wait to cash in.

Don't you read your comments section?

Posted by: JD | November 26, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

I agree with bsimon and AndyR, who responded directly to proud's post at 12:14P, and I think claudia's 12:25P reply was fairly phrased, while perhaps subject to some criticism as hyperbole [drindl overstates for emphasis, right?].

But Pali2500 and Jenn2 fell into the old "KOZ - Rufus - MikeB" mold of anonymous personal criticism of the character of a person with whom they merely disagreed.

They can do better.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 26, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

President George W. Bush, April 13, 2004:

"As a proud and independent people, Iraqis do not support an indefinite occupation and neither does America."
then-U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, August 14, 2005:

"We do not seek permanent military bases in Iraq. Our goal is to help Iraq stand on its own feet, to be able to look after its own security, and to do what we can to help achieve that goal."

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 3:21 PM | Report abuse

'Could Congress stop a Bush administration-brokered deal to garrison U.S. troops in Iraq indefinitely? Not according to General Douglas Lute, the so-called "war czar."

Lute said the White House intends to conclude negotiations on an enduring security guarantee with the Maliki government in July. Permanent military bases and troop levels will be specified in the final accord, he said.'

Gee, when I said american companies would be getting special breaks in Iraq and that we would have permanent bases there to protect them, I was called a conspiracy theorist.

Wonder how the fact that a deal for permaneent bases and troop levels wil be specified in July will effect the elections?

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Happy to see Lott go, but Miss. won't be turning blue, so discussing his replacement is moot, IMHO.

More interesting to me is this article:

Posted by: femalenick | November 26, 2007 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Mibrooks, are you INSANE? Follow me through wingnut logic here...

The voting public...will projectile vomit at the mention of Hillary's name....because there is gossip...among those who read European newspapers...that her husband....already well known to be a fan of the lay-dies....which hasn't hurt his 2/3 approval ratings...played strip poker....with a lesbian....forty years ago...

Still waiting on that link to "Der Spiel"...

Posted by: Jenn2 | November 26, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Claudia - based on what I see in the European press I think it's a lot more than mere rumor. It has also opened up floodgates of some weird behavior by Bill. The Times reprinted a a 2003 story just today entitled "Mandy, the mystery lesbian in Bill's past": "A MYSTERY "girlfriend" shared by Bill Clinton and the writer Christopher Hitchens while they were at Oxford has been revealed as a radical lesbian who is now a lecturer and writer on Princess Diana. Her identity has been intriguing Americans after Hitchens revealed indiscreetly last week that he had shared a girlfriend with Clinton during their days at Oxford University.
Mandy Merck, a friend of both men in the late 1960s, has admitted to being the lady in question. She played strip poker with the future president and exchanged a kiss with Hitchens, she said, though her preference was for her own sex."

You get the idea. The problem is, both members of the Clinton couple are loonies and quite a bit of this mud will stick. The result will be a voting public that projectile vomits at the mere mention of their last name by the time the next election rolls around.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

The other paper, the one in New York, reports that Lott will resign before the end of the year, when new ethics regulations would require that he wait two years instead of one before lobbying Congress. This apparently trumps the service he would do to his party by resigning at a later date. After all,he has a large house to pay for on the coast...

Posted by: jswearingen | November 26, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

What? Permanent U.S. bases in Iraq? I've never heard of anything so absurd! Why, you -- you -- you conspiracy theorist! How can you be so shrill, so irresponsible, so, so, so...

Oh, wait.

'Iraq's government is prepared to offer the U.S. a long-term troop presence in Iraq and preferential treatment for American investments in return for an American guarantee of long-term security including defense against internal coups, The Associated Press learned Monday"

See, we aren't leaving Iraq--ever. American corporations there, like Halliburton, will get 'special treatment' in return for American taxpayers and troops propping up Maliki's wildly unpopular and corrupt Shiite government against 'internal coups' -- like elections and democracy.

It's all worked out so well for Blackwater and Halliburton. Not so much for American taxpayers and troops.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 2:20 PM | Report abuse

'More importantly, Mrs. Giuliani is killing puppies! Where is the outrage?!?'

It was apparently all in NY. You see, Mrs. Guiliani used to work for a medical equipment company and demonstrated their surgical staplers for prospective clients on puppies' stomachs. They then blew the stomach full to bursting with air, to demonstrate the staplers strength. Then they killed the puppies. All in a day's work.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I am confused by this. If Lott resigns in 2007, how can Barbour decide to not respect the law and go for a November special election?

Also, a new poll from KANSAS has Clinton VERY competitive, close behind Rudy Giuliani and leading Mitt Romney. This is in a state Bush won with 62% in 2004! Link:

Posted by: campaigndiaries | November 26, 2007 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Please keep your readers updated as to which corporate sinecure Lott ascends to.

Posted by: Spectator | November 26, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse


The answer to both of your questions is: Yes.

Posted by: CaptainJohn2525 | November 26, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Please keep your readers updated as to which corporate sinecure Lott ascends to.

Posted by: Spectator | November 26, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Can you clarify the issue of the special election and the new law.
Does he have to resign before the end of 2007 to avoid the new lobbying law?
If he resigns before the new year, then is a special election mandatory under Mississippi law?

Posted by: sanjay08544 | November 26, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Der Spiel", would that be the wingnut version of "Der Spiegel"?

I sure don't see anything on the Times or Der Spiegel's website saying they have solid evidence HRC is a lesbian, you wanna link to those or give up your lunch money?

What I do see on the Times' website:

"The anonymous e-mails and letters began dropping into inboxes and through front doors this summer.

One claimed that Hillary Clinton was having a lesbian affair with Huma Abedin, her beautiful aide. Another online mass-mailing cautioned of the "dark secrets" of Mitt Romney's Mormonism. A blogger claiming to support John McCain said that Rudy Giuliani's wife supported the killing of "innocent puppies". Flyers appeared on cars accusing Barack Obama of being a Muslim extremist. An anonymous website said that Fred Thompson was a corrupt playboy.

Welcome to South Carolina, the foulest swamp of electoral dirty tricks in America. This state's primary race has already become the sleaziest leg of the 2008 presidential campaign."


Ah yes, the reporting and subsequent mocking of an anonymous email is converted into the Times claiming that they have solid evidence HRC is a lesbian! More importantly, Mrs. Giuliani is killing puppies! Where is the outrage?!?

Posted by: Jenn2 | November 26, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse


Lott retires before December 31st, 2007 and avoids the 2-year lobbying rule that takes effect on January 1st, 2008 ~ OR ~ a special Senate election in Mississippi where the seat is up for grabs.

It's going to get more interesting, NO doubt...and the Democrats have a chance to win in one of the South's most conservative states.

Please may want to adjust your 'rabbit ears' for this one.

Posted by: CaptainJohn2525 | November 26, 2007 1:46 PM | Report abuse

why don't you tell these women about how fabulously 'The Surge' is working?

MARABA, Syria -- Back home in Iraq, Umm Hiba's daughter was a devout schoolgirl, modest in her dress and serious about her studies. Hiba, who is now 16, wore the hijab, or Islamic head scarf, and rose early each day to say the dawn prayer before classes.
But that was before militias began threatening their Baghdad neighborhood and Umm Hiba and her daughter fled to Syria last spring. There were no jobs, and Umm Hiba's elderly father developed complications related to his diabetes.

Desperate, Umm Hiba followed the advice of an Iraqi acquaintance and took her daughter to work at a nightclub along a highway known for prostitution. "We Iraqis used to be a proud people," she said over the frantic blare of the club's speakers. She pointed out her daughter, dancing among about two dozen other girls on the stage, wearing a pink silk dress with spaghetti straps, her frail shoulders bathed in colored light.

"During the war we lost everything," she said. "We even lost our honor."

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

novamatt -- there are many many military blogs and official vet's blogs, if you'd like links. i correspond with several.

omigod, mikeb - you aren't falling for that crap are you? It's so winger- loony and tired.

pali --more about the plight of women in iraq today:

'But last night, NBC Nightly News aired a segment about a "wave of violence that's gone largely unreported lately against women in Iraq." The report noted that Iraqi women, once "the most emancipated in the Arab world," are increasingly unable to walk around without a hijab, wear cosmetics, or work. Watch the report:

Bush has largely ignored the deteriorating plight of Iraqi women, choosing instead to cite signs of "progress." Yet earlier in the war, he and other administration officials repeatedly claimed that the rights of Iraqi women were "inseparable" to success.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 1:42 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - I think a story appearing in the European press is behind the CLinton campaign's going negative. The Times of London, Der Spiel, all repected mainstream newspapers, are this morning reporting that they have solid evidence that Hillary Clinton is a lesbian and has been carrying on with a personal aide and hads a hstory of similar relationships going back since her days in the White House. If this story has feet, and I'd bet my lunch money it does, then things are going to *really* ugly in a hurry.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | November 26, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

"The DNC would be wasting time and money in trying to win this seat."

Maybe, I dunno, but they have so *very* much money, why not?

I've always pictured proud as a frat boy, myself...

Posted by: Jenn2 | November 26, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

If anyone wants a clue as to what a nut Chip Pickering is, check out his cameo in the Borat movie. That's him at the evangelical crazy convention Borat crashes.

Posted by: iltrovator | November 26, 2007 1:32 PM | Report abuse

gosh, no mention of larry flynt?

Posted by: mycomment | November 26, 2007 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"A blimp! Ron Paul is getting a blimp!"

The late night folks, if they had writers, would get a lot of mileage out of this. What a rich opportunity for metaphor! Hindenburg jokes! Lead/Led Zeppelins! Hot air! Risks of deflation!

Here's my contribution:

The no-drug-laws wing of Libertarians will now fly HIGHER than kites!

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 1:27 PM | Report abuse

If MSNBC is to be believeed Lott is resigning in order to cash in on K Street. That is almost certainly the case given that it is unlikely that Lott has experienced an overwhelming urge to be with his family that didn't exist last year when he decided to seek reelection. If that is true then he will certainly leave before the end of the year when new lobbying rules take effect, setting up a special election where Moore has to be considered at least a slight favourite.

"While the exactly reason Lott is stepping down before he finishes his term is unknown, the general speculation is that a quick departure immunizes Lott against tougher restrictions in a new lobbying law that takes effect at the end of the year. That law would require Senators to wait two-years before entering the lucrative world of lobbying Congress."

Posted by: JCarlFinn5 | November 26, 2007 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Don't you love the neanderthals' names? 'proudtobeGOP', for example, an unfortunate geriatric who mindlessly reminisces about Johnny Mathis.

Here's a clue, goobers:

Iraq is no closer to being a functioning country or of having a functioning government than before the so-called "surge" began.

Therefore, the surge has failed.


PS: For the reality of Iraq, try reading "City of Widows: An Iraqi Woman's Account of War and Resistance" by Haifa Zangana, a former prisoner of Saddam Hussein.

"Addressing the stark realities of Iraq today, Zangana reveals Baghdad as a "city of widows," where more than 300,000 women have been left to head households. Just as the sanctions disproportionately affected women and children, the war and occupation have destroyed their way of life. In the rebuilding of Iraq, as so often before, Zangana suggests, Iraqi women will be left to pick up the pieces of their country after yet another senseless imperial adventure."

Posted by: pali2500 | November 26, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

And it seems to me all the guff about whether The Surge is working ignores a couple of salient facts:

1. The de-escalation of violence exactly corresponded with Sadr's unilateral cease-fire and the Iraqi Sunnis' muzzling of al Qaeda forces in Iraq.

2. Those of us who aren't in Iraq don't know jack about what's going on there, and the Americans who are there and have a media platform are pushing propaganda. The ones who really would know are the military and NGO grunts and of course the Iraqis, and few of us have unfiltered access to them.

Posted by: novamatt | November 26, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

No hatred, bhoomes, just calling a spade a spade. Political malpractice, or rather I should say, governing malpractice, is what your party does best. I sincerely beleive your predictions for this election will be just as spot on as they were last election, when you predicted an R landslide.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

A blimp! Ron Paul is getting a blimp! What fun.

'Please join us in our goal to raise $350,000 to make and fly the first ever Presidential Blimp in history. Choose a pledge amount below and enter your email address to confirm the pledge. When we reach our goal in pledges you'll receive an email letting you know it's time to fulfill the pledge.'

And the cost of the surge -- stuff you war boosters just don't like to talk about:

'The Pentagon has said that 4,471 soliders sustained injuries to their brains in Iraq and Afghanistan as of September 30th. There's just one teeny-tiny problem with that number, which is that the the Army, Navy and Department of Veterans Affairs have either seen or treated more than 20,000 soldiers for brain injuries than the Pentagon reports have been injured.

The new numbers come from a variety of sources, including VA records and 4 U.S. bases that have supplied multiple units to the conflicts.'

20,000 brain injuries -- that's the price of a conflict with a country which was not a threat to us. and how many more?

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 12:49 PM | Report abuse

The juicier story is over the upcoming battle between Kyl and Lamar! for Whip.

Posted by: novamatt | November 26, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Ronnie Shows could also run.

Posted by: nivbri21 | November 26, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Drindl confirms my strong belief in dualism. Though all of her vemon and hate there is a decent person crying out to be heard. Saw CC on PSMBC saying we conservatives are waving the Hillary card to much. We have plenty to offer CC in low taxes, anti-Nanny Goverment and strong economy and foriegn policy but not to use the card that stirs up our base would be political malpractice. I seem to remember John Kerry running from behind in Mass to win by running against Newt. If you got 4 aces in your hand you be a fool to call.

Posted by: vbhoomes | November 26, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Proud, Women make up 51% of our population, Blacks 13%, Hispanics 15%.
That means that the all white male collection your party "represents" makes up at best 30% of the population.

Posted by: AndyR3 | November 26, 2007 12:31 PM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP writes
"The dems have already demonstrated that they were wrong about the surge and incapable of leaderhip on matters of national security."

Thats as disingenuous as arguing that the Repubs are all-war, all-the-time. Both parties are politicizing the war, the Dems by forcing Repubs to support the President's myopic plans for imposing democracy with a military; the Repubs for forcing the Dems to either submit to the Pres or cut off all funding. Almost nobody is looking for real solutions or demonstrating true leadership.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 12:30 PM | Report abuse

I'll bet $ Lott isn't resigning for any of the reasons spoonfed to the stenographic media by anonymous sources. Please stop "reporting" self-serving anonymous spin!

"Fatigue has set in"? What a crock, and we can actually know it is based on whether Lott waits until the new year to resign, because I think if he waits then he would be subject to more stringent lobbying/ethics rules.

Posted by: bugmeplease | November 26, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

'meanwhile, they've got a woman, a black, an Hispanic, a preening metrosexual with an angled nape - and they all think exactly the same. '

and you have a preening metrosexual with an angled nape and a $400 makeup job, several bush retreads, an egomaniac, s*x addict lunatic with two speeds -- sleep and 9/11 [apologies, bsimon] and a preacher, whom however nice, doesn't beleive in science, contraception, or separation of church and state. oh and i forgot-- an anarchist. and they're all white. they don't think all the same, they're just batsh*t crazy in different ways.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 12:25 PM | Report abuse

The dems have already demonstrated that they were wrong about the surge and incapable of leaderhip on matters of national security. They have been shown to be wrong in their predictions about Iraq, and insist on spouting the same balme-Bush surrender and retreat strategy -meanwhile, they've got a woman, a black, an Hispanic, a preening metrosexual with an angled nape - and they all think exactly the same. They remind me of The Johnny Mathis Christmas Album, which Columbia used to re-release every year in a different sleeve: same old songs, new cover.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | November 26, 2007 12:14 PM | Report abuse

'WASHINGTON, Nov. 25 -- Confronting an enormous fund-raising gap with Democrats, Republican Party officials are aggressively recruiting wealthy candidates who can spend large sums of their own money to finance their Congressional races, party officials say.'

You might want to write something about this, CC -- I think it really says a lot about the state of the Rparty and their chances in the next election.

'upholds our Judeo-Christian values'? You mean like cutting taxes for wealthy folks, while hammering the poor and middle class? Interesting interpretation of 'values'.

If Missisippi is doing such a great job of recovery, why is Trent Lott suing his insurance company? Oh where is the 'tort reform' now, Trent?

' In many ways, Hurricane Katrina was an equal-opportunity disaster, destroying the homes of both rich and poor Gulf Coast residents. Among the most prominent victims was Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS), whose 19th-century seaside home in Pascagoula, Miss., was obliterated by the storm.

Now, Lott is one of thousands of Mississippi homeowners who are suing their insurance companies. They believe their claims for coverage were unfairly rejected -- and many say they now have no way to rebuild the homes they lost.'

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 12:11 PM | Report abuse

If Lott's resigning for a lobbying job, he has to resign before the end of the year because of the new ethics regulations that double the time before he could take the job, right? What does that mean in terms of a special election?

Posted by: da1cnote | November 26, 2007 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Mississippi is such a Red State now that it is almost imossible for a Democrat to win. None of the Democrat candidates for President can win there and only McCain and Huckabee could win Mississippi, which is telling about a third party candidate coming into the race if Rudy or Mitt capture the GOP nomination.

Lott's Senate seat stays in the GOP column for sometime well into the future. The DNC would be wasting time and money in trying to win this seat.

Danny L. McDaniel
Lafayette, Indiana

Posted by: ussmcdaniel | November 26, 2007 12:06 PM | Report abuse

The Democrats will never get this seat. It will go to a Republican, and I think it will be Chip Pickering. It only makes sense.

And yes, Gene Taylor might be a Democrat, but he is an "Old South" Democrat, one of the few left. That means he is very conservative, and upholds our Judeo-Christian values. I voted for him, and I'm a Conservative.

And about the person that said the Republicans botched the Katrina recovery: Umm, you must be thinking of the Democrats in Louisiana. Mississippi is 1-1/2 years ahead of them in recovery, as far as the Katrina cottages go. Barbour did a wonderful job, as did our residents down here. I think you need to re-read your history of the event.

Posted by: ericlee327 | November 26, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

CC didn't mention it, but there are several reports today that Lott will resign before the end of this year to avoid strict limits on lobbying by former Senators that become effective on January 1, 2008.

It's the same old Republican story: get as much as you can any way you can and let the public be damned.

Posted by: donkirk_ep | November 26, 2007 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Trent Lott as the VP Pat Buchanan recommended some time back, Rick Santorum as presidential candidate...oh, a (Democrat) girl can dream, can't she? What's the word for something 100 times worse than a thumpin'?

He's not running for VP. He's getting out before the lobbying reforms take effect.

Posted by: Jenn2 | November 26, 2007 11:43 AM | Report abuse

' I didn't question your patriotism, so why did you react so strongly. Did I strike a chord deep in your soul about love of country?'

Oh, but you did, by using the verbal construction you did. I reacted strongly becuase I am f*cking sick and tired of bush's supporters calling anyone who criticizes his idiot policies a traitor.

dvirreal-- tell me,, where do you buy your crack? also, do you belong to the KKK? you seem to be extraordinarly focused on 'white males' --btw, if you want to know why Lott resigned -- over the weekend in a complete surprise move -- ask Larry Flunt. Lott will not be running for anythiing.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Here's one for Geritol!

Posted by: snowyphile | November 26, 2007 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Trent Lott would definitely get the white male vote, because he's the only white male in the presidential race. Except John Edwards. And Joe Biden. And several other Democrats. Oh, and every Republican. But except for them, he's the only white male in the field!

Posted by: Blarg | November 26, 2007 11:34 AM | Report abuse

dvillarreal1981 writes
"At the very least, Lott will be an exceedingly strong vice presidential candidate."

I am considering that possibility; Lott could certainly add something to a Romney candidacy. I think your prediction of a Presidential run is delusional though.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Like they say in football... If you can't get it through the goalposts, move them.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Trent Lott will announce a candidacy for the presidency. He will immediately gain 30-50 percent of the vote because of evangelical Christians. Lott's national background and prominence and ties to the Republican establishment will bring in millions almost immediately. He will immediately get the white, male vote, and this will be a huge problem for any Democratic candidate, especially Barack Obama but also Hillary Clinton. At the very least, Lott will be an exceedingly strong vice presidential candidate. With Lott on the ticket, any Democratic candidate will require a hefty, white male counter to Lott. A Lott candidacy is a god send to the Republican party. He will immediately make the Republican ticket electable after President Bush--save any future and major Bush gaffes.

Posted by: dvillarreal1981 | November 26, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

My My, some of you are very senstive(Drindl) I didn't question your patriotism, so why did you react so strongly. Did I strike a chord deep in your soul about love of country? You lefties take yourself to serioulsy, that's why it's so easy to get your goat.

Posted by: vbhoomes | November 26, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

vbhoomes writes
"I find it somewhat amazing the some of you on the left our so whetted and invested in our defeat in Iraq you cannot bring yourself to admit that you were wrong about the surge."

While I undestand why you do it, it is inappropriate for the President's supporters to presume that everyone critical of his war policy is from the left or 'invested in our defeat'. As has been mentioned by several people already, it is good to see the military achieving success in changing the rate of violence in Iraq. But it is likewise important for us to objectively and rationally assess whether such efforts are furthering our goals. Given that all signs point to a lack of political progress in Iraq - which was the goal of the surge, if we're to believe the President's statement at the outset, isn't it important to recognize the situation & make the appropriate adjustments in pursuit of such goals? Or should we just sit quietly by, let the Bush administration change their priorities, declare success & move on?

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 11:19 AM | Report abuse

The reason Lott is leaving is so that he can get paid and cash in on the influence that he has developed over the past 20 years. He isn't a wealthy man and his house in Mississippi was destroyed in Katrina. He was thought to be leaving last election but changed his mind because he wanted to see the Katrina relief funds go through which has now happened. I would imagine that he will get some cushy job at a law firm or hit the speaking trail for 5K a pop.

The question though is did Pickering Know this when he said he wasn't running next year. Barbour could nominate him to finish the term and then he would be in a great position to hold the seat if Moore runs.

Posted by: AndyR3 | November 26, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

'And you wonder why people question your patriotism.'

Why not just STFU, bhoomes? How dare you. You don't counter a single intelligent argument anyone makes, you still cling to your weak-minded propaganda, and the best you can come up with is calling people traitors because they tell the truth.

That's typical of republicans today. Faced with reality, all they can do is try to change the subject. I question YOUR patriotism, to want to keep your country emboiled in an occupation for oil company profits that is destroying our military and our ability to defend ourselves.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Totally OT, but isn't it a sad fact that the sub-prime meltdown was so predictable that the most single profitable single fund trade of all time was betting against these loans? And the 'liquidity crunch' is a nice way of saying that all these so-called 'assets' aren't worth anything, and the entire economy is a house of cards, ready to come tumbling down? And that the folks who make billions of dollars on americans losing their homes don't have to pay taxes? Strange world, isn't it?

'The decision to use derivatives to short, or bet against, low-quality US home loans taken by a select group of hedge funds last year appears to have become the most profitable single trade of all time, making well over $20bn in total so far this year. John Paulson's New York-based Paulson & Co, the biggest of the group with $28bn under management, is said by investors to have made $12bn profit from the trade already.

However, Mr Lahde, whose fund is one of the smallest specialists shorting subprime, has now begun to return money to investors, telling them in a letter: "The risk/return characteristics are far less attractive than in the past."

In his letter, Mr Lahde said he expected the collapse in value of subprime mortgage-linked securities to be repeated for bonds backed by commercial property loans in a deep recession - which he also predicts.

"Our entire banking system is a complete disaster," he wrote. "In my opinion, nearly every major bank would be insolvent if they marked their assets to market." He also said he would be putting some of his own profits into gold and other precious metals.'

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 11:03 AM | Report abuse

This seat might not go to a Democrat, but it might depend on which Democrat runs.

It might also depend on the reason Lott decided to resign. Was it his decision or is he being forced out for the "good of the party"?

Was he caught in a Foley, Craig, Vitter type situation? Not exactly what anyone could describe as high moral family values.

Independants that might have given Republicans their votes in the past because of their claims of being the party with higher moral family values, may have come to the conclusion that saying it is so does not make it so.

Posted by: cjones210 | November 26, 2007 10:53 AM | Report abuse

I find it somewhat amazing the some of you on the left our so whetted and invested in our defeat in Iraq you cannot bring yourself to admit that you were wrong about the surge. You need security before the democratic processes to take root but you are so afraid of GWB getting credit for a successful policy you seemed to be rooting for our defeat. And you wonder why people question your patriotism. I would love to be the Ad agency that gets to run the montage next year of all the dems saying the surge is a failure. Plus with Hillary at the top of your ticket their is no way in hell any democrat could win in Mississippi. GOP candidate just needs to run against Hillary and the wait for January to take his oath of office.

Posted by: vbhoomes | November 26, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Blarg writes
"we need to focus on the real issue: The Singing Senators. Larry Craig may resign soon, and Jeffords didn't seek re-election last year. Could a reunion be in the works?"

Interesting point. Did they replace Ashcroft, or let him participate as a retiree? Who else is a current member - I know Hatch has released a record, but have a suspicion he's more of a soloist than a group performer. Could Lott's pending resignation be a move towards a professional recording/performing career?

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Before anyone else brings up Gene Taylor, keep in mind he is one of the biggest DINOs in the entire House; he is more conservative than many Republicans. He was one of only two Ds to vote against the SCHIP veto override.

Posted by: rezam3 | November 26, 2007 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I might also add that the vet's site has links to 'Traumatic Brain Injury resources' and 'Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome resources' -- including suicide hotlines -- you might want to visit their site sometime and see how what this occupation is doing to the people who are actually over there fighting it, and how they feel about it, you know, if you actually 'support the troops' rather than just using them as some personal fantasy to make you feel more manly.

Btw, I'm trying to undertake doing a book drive to send to troops over there, and I wonder if any of the military people here know who in the military I could contact to find out if this is acceptable and where to send them, etc?

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Btw, bhoommes -- remember Afghanistan? From as veteran;s website, you know, the people who actually have to fight these wars:

'The conflict in Afghanistan has reached "crisis proportions," with the resurgent Taliban present in more than half the country and closing in on Kabul, a report said on Wednesday.

If NATO, the lead force operating in Afghanistan, is to have any impact against the insurgency, troop numbers will have to be doubled to at least 80,000, the report said.

"The Taliban has shown itself to be a truly resurgent force," the Senlis Council, an independent think-tank with a permanent presence in Afghanistan, wrote in a study entitled "Stumbling into Chaos: Afghanistan on the brink."

"Its ability to establish a presence throughout the country is now proven beyond doubt," it said. "The insurgency now controls vast swaths of unchallenged territory including rural areas, some district centers, and important road arteries."

Senlis said its research had established that the Taliban, driven out of Afghanistan by the U.S. invasion in late 2001, had rebuilt a permanent presence in 54 percent of the country and was finding it easy to recruit new followers.'

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 10:28 AM | Report abuse

What does Lott's retirement do to the Senate's Republican leadership? I wonder if he'll be replaced by a more moderate or cooperative Minority Whip. Nah, it's the Republicans; that would never happen.

But we need to focus on the real issue: The Singing Senators. Larry Craig may resign soon, and Jeffords didn't seek re-election last year. Could a reunion be in the works?

Posted by: Blarg | November 26, 2007 10:23 AM | Report abuse

'Recently for example a Miss. school was judged the WORST in the nation.'

precisely why it's a republican state. the red states have the worst schools, which produce people with few critical thinking skills. hence, the cycle continues.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Bhoomes: I would add to bsimon's comment by pointing out that the 'surge' is working at the cost of a record number of US soldiers killed in Iraq. So far, 2007 has been the deadliest year for US forces since the 2003 invasion.

Conclusion: with the standard zero political progress, this 'peace' is an illusion perpetuated at the price of increased American deaths. Celebration is somewhat premature, to put it mildly.

Once again, I am reminded of the lessons of Vietnam. There, we 'won' the war as long as we were willing to flood the country with GI's. When that resolve went away, the NV took over. Might there might be a lesson for Iraq in there somewhere? Do we want to be The World's Policeman AGAIN at the cost of trillions of dollars of debt? Whatever argument you might make for continuing to occupy Iraq can be replicated a dozen times over elsewhere in the world.

Posted by: judgeccrater | November 26, 2007 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I agree with claudialong... Things are different now with Bush's approval ratings so low. I think the Democrats DO have a shot at this seat. Consider this, out of Mississippi's 4 congressional districts, 2 are held by Democrats! And, one of those Democrats- Gene Taylor, was re-elected with the highest percentage of all 4 districts at 80 percent! Plus, as the article states above, former Mississippi Attorney General- Mike Moore is "by far, the most popular Democratic politician in the state." More popular than Gene Taylor who was re-elected with 80 percent of the vote! I say this seat is definately in play!

Posted by: stormnut35 | November 26, 2007 10:18 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes, McCain was right when he criticized Rummy for YEARS about "whack-a-mole", and we needed more troops from the beginning. The surge is a tactical success and Petraeus, who deserves credit and not ridicule, is an excellent general.

But we all know - it is conceded by the Administration as well - that the Iraqi central government is a a government in name only.

Most of us who have been in service or had family in service think that 15 mos tours are ludicrous - although AggieMike pointed out that in a guerilla war experience is better than a fresh face - 15 mos is still ludicrous.

Without an approach that stresses diplomacy
like Baker-Hamilton or Biden-Gelb the whole exercise becomes futile.

As long as GWB is blind to the notion of serious diplomacy, and adding in the certainty we will have to draw down our troop levels, Iraq remains a failure and it
is largely perceived as an R failure.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 26, 2007 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Why is Miss. written off as a Repub state? I realize that it is a reality but considering the demographics and economics of the state what are those people thinking? Recently for example a Miss. school was judged the WORST in the nation.

Posted by: MTgrassland | November 26, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

well bhooomes, the fact that the whole point of the surge was political progress, which is not happening, and the fact that we cannot maintain the current troop strength--that we cannot recruit enough troops to replace the current ones, even with $30,000 enlistment bonuses - the fact that we have thousands and thousands of dead and maimed troops and have spent almost a trillion [borrowed] dollars-- with no end in sight-- the fact that a quarter of the homeless in this country are iraq/afghanistan veterans, and kids are on their fourth and fifth deployments
and oh by the way, the taliban are taking over afghanistan again--and al queda is taking over parts of pakistan, which btw is falling apart and has loose nukes floating all over the country--well i think people might well look beyond the fabled 'surge''s possible achievements -- and say, what next? what's the strategy to bring the troops home, as we have to? what will happen when we leave?

first you all said we had to stay because the situation in iraq was bad. but now yo say we have to stay because the situation is better. when the troops come home and iraq is stable, then i will say it was a success. how long are we willing to stay committed there? how many more kids will die? how many more trillions will we borrow from our grandchildren?

i think if you had asked the average american if they were willing to sacrifice so many years, so much that could have been spent on actually making us safer, so much blood and treasure for a country that was never a threat to us, and where 70% of the population thinks it's okay to attack american soldiers, they might have said no, don't you?

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

W's approval ratings are worse than Tricky Dick's lowest. Gee, do ya think the GOP response to Hurricane Katrina really won them more support? That 59% GOP support in Mississippi is vaporware, useless for anything but the history books. Watch for Democratic candidates in FL, GA, TX, NC, MS, SC, and yes, even LA.

Posted by: thw2001 | November 26, 2007 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Katrina occurred after the 2004 election.

The Republican bungling of the clean-up and restoration efforts undoubtedly left a foul taste in the mouths of Mississippi voters.

Maybe a Democrat like Mike Moore now has a chance.

As for Lott, his departure comes not a moment too soon.

Goodbye. Good riddance.

Posted by: pali2500 | November 26, 2007 10:07 AM | Report abuse

vbhoomes writes
"with the surge in Iraq working better than anybody could have dreamed of..."

yay! Violence back down to 2005 levels, with close to zero political progress from the Iraqi 'government'. Mr Hoomes, perhaps you are jumping the gun a wee bit in declaring the surge a resounding success. With our troop drawdowns beginning, it is not at all clear that the trend for violence in Iraq will continue downward. Our military has certainly done a great job, but if the politicians don't take advantage of the situation, it will all have been for naught.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 10:04 AM | Report abuse

While Lott's seat probably isn't a great pickup opportunity for the Dems, it seems like another place where they can throw some dollars just to force the Rs to spend their more limited money to insure victory.

I think the real news is the Kornblutt-Murray story on the Clinton campaign going more negative. Perhaps its too soon to call it a 'desperate' move by that campaign - but its a good sign for those of us who have long complained about the 'inevitable' argument that campaign has made.

Posted by: bsimon | November 26, 2007 10:00 AM | Report abuse

A lot of contested senate seats would normally spell disaster for the GOP next year but with the surge in Iraq working better than anybody could have dreamed of, we have all those soundbites and clips of Harry Ried and company saying the surge is a failure, we lost the war, etc, voters will be reminded why you cannot trust the dems with National Security.

Posted by: vbhoomes | November 26, 2007 9:58 AM | Report abuse

But, who will inherit that helmet that Lott calls his natural hair? :)

Posted by: cel1ery | November 26, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Since Bush's approval rating is now about 25%, CC -- I think you might want to stop using this a measure of anything. The state may lean republican, but things are a little different today.

What makes you think Pickering will run? Didn't he say he was through with politics?

Btw, anyone see Huckabee's new ad yet? Here's a clip:

"Faith doesn't just influence me, it really defines me," he says while seated by a window. "I don't have to wake up everyday, wondering, 'What do I need to believe?'" he adds, while the words "Christian Leader," and "One of America's Best Governors" flash on-screen, and he walks outdoors with a farmer."

Not too cliched, is it? Hammering that 'Christian Leader' thing sure sounds kinda divisive, doesn't it? Kind of like trying to get rid of that whole pesky church/state separation thing.

However, he has SERIOUS enemies... here's Novak:

'Huckabee is campaigning as a conservative, but serious Republicans know that he is a high-tax, protectionist advocate of big government and a strong hand in the Oval Office directing the lives of Americans. Until now, they did not bother to expose the former governor of Arkansas as a false conservative because he seemed an underfunded, unknown nuisance candidate. Now that he has pulled even with Mitt Romney for the Iowa caucuses and might make more progress, the beleaguered Republican Party has a frightening problem.'

Frankly, I'm not sure which one of them scares me more.

Posted by: drindl | November 26, 2007 9:48 AM | Report abuse

How about a small blurb on why he's leaving?? That would be a hell of a lot more useful than speculation on his replacement.

Posted by: Doubtom | November 26, 2007 9:47 AM | Report abuse

This seat is going nowhere. No democrat can compete in this state for a senate seat.

Posted by: Normscoffee | November 26, 2007 9:43 AM | Report abuse

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