Rumors Roil Around Lott Resignation

Could the senator's hasty exit be tied to Dickie Scruggs?
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 29, 2007 6:02 PM CST
Tobacco lawyer Richard "Dickie" Scruggs leaves the James O. Eastland U.S. Federal Courthouse after testifying before the grand jury on Friday, May 16, 2003. Investigators have been trying to determine   (KRT Photos)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – There’s been much conjecture about why Trent Lott resigned five years before his term’s end—boredom, bitterness, eagerness to cash in on K Street—but now bloggers on both sides of the aisle are wondering whether a scandal involving his brother-in-law, Dickie Scruggs, might be behind the surprise exit. Scruggs' indictment yesterday for bribery on a Katrina-related case heated up speculation, Slate’s Tim Noah notes.

The senator and the flamboyant plaintiff''s attorney teamed up on a ferocious crusade against State Farm, after the insurer denied claims on Lott's Katrina-ravaged house. A  Wall Street Journal editorialist at the time called the assault  "political revenge” and the ensuing settlement "extortive." The writer surely meant that figuratively, but could it be, Noah asks, that the FBI poking into Scruggs' affairs are about to expose something unseemly on Lott's part?