Catching up with South Mississippi’s Gene Taylor and Trent Lott

Though they are no longer representing Mississippi on Capitol Hill and fighting partisan battles, former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott and former U.S. Rep. Gene Taylor have more than enough to keep them busy these days.

Lott, a Republican, was elected to the U.S. House in 1972 and to the Senate in 1988. In 2002, Lott stepped down from his Senate GOP leadership position after now-notorious remarks he made at Sen. Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday party that seemed to say he supported segregation. After he had worked his way back up to minority whip, the second-highest post in the GOP Senate, Lott decided to retire in late 2007.

Taylor, who was a former Bay St. Louis city councilman, won a special election in 1989 for the U.S. House seat Lott had held. Taylor, a Democrat, was chosen by voters after then-U.S. Rep. Larkin Smith, who had held Lott’s old seat for only seven months, died in a plane crash. In 2010, Taylor was beaten by Republican challenger Steven Palazzo, who now represents South Mississippi in Washington.

The Sun Herald caught up with Lott and Taylor recently to find out what they’re up to these days.

Sun Herald