US Senator Trent Lott announced yesterday (11-26-07) that he’ll be leaving the Senate at the end of the year. According to Wall Street Journal writer David Rogers (11-27-07), “New Senate ethics rules, which take effect at the end of the year and impose a longer ‘cooling off’ period before he could lobby his colleagues, may have contributed to his timing. Also, the recent announcement by Republican Sen. Thad Cochran that he will seek re-election likely assures Mississippi of having a continued strong presence in Washington and makes it easier for Mr. Lott to make his exit.” Democrats are snickering over Lott’s impending departure but they shouldn’t; Lott was a consumate dealmaker & worked well with Democrats – sometimes at the cost of Republican principles. His departure for greener pastures might result in a more conservative minority leadership seeking to overcome the party’s self-inflicted wounds which led in part to the debacle of 2006. If that’s the case, no tears will be shed for the outgoing Lott – unless it’s tears of joy over the prospect of having one less fool within the ranks of the GOP’s national leadership.