Former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, a Republican from Mississippi, was suddenly fired this week.
According to Politico, Lott was working for the firm Squire Patton Boggs, a powerful lobbyist firm in Washington, D.C., when he was fired.
It does not appear that a reason has been given or made public for the firing.
“The firm gave no reason for the Mississippi Republican’s sudden departure and declined to answer questions about it,” Politico reports. “Mark Ruehlmann, Squire Patton Boggs’ chairman and global chief executive, said only that the firm had ‘decided that it is the right time to make a change in the leadership’ of its public policy practice.”
In a statement, Ruelhmann thanked Lott for his service but said the “evolving marketplace” required a change:
We wish to thank retired Senator Trent Lott for his years of service to the firm and our clients. As a global law firm, we are obliged to constantly evaluate and tailor our professional offerings to not only respond but also anticipate the issues and concerns of an evolving marketplace and the clients we serve.
Squire Patton Boggs gave no reason for the sudden departure of former Senate majority leader Trent Lotthttps://t.co/Pg5bRF5mLQ
— POLITICO (@politico) June 9, 2020
A K Street mystery: Squire Patton Boggs suddenly fired former Sen. Trent Lott, one of the most prominent lobbyists in Washington. The firm won't say why. https://t.co/63c8OmkRvY
— Theodoric Meyer (@theodoricmeyer) June 9, 2020
Politico’s report speculates that Lott and his longtime business partner, former Louisana Democratic Sen. John Breaux, were in talks with another lobbying firm.
When Squire Patton Boggs found out, apparently they decided to “part ways” with Lott and Breaux.
“We were negotiating with another firm, they found out about it, and they tried to take preventative action” to keep the two men from taking lobbying clients with them to another firm, Lott told Politico.
“The decision may have backfired: Lott said he had gotten inquiries from three other lobbying firms interested in hiring the duo since Squire Patton Boggs announced his ouster. He expects Breaux to resign from the firm today,” Politico noted.
Politico notes how Lott and Breaux played a big role at the firm over the years.
Squire Patton Boggs has been changed dramatically since Breaux and Lott arrived a decade ago when the firm was still known as Patton Boggs and run by Thomas Hale Boggs Jr., the legendary lobbyist who built it into the top lobbying shop in Washington. Many of the firm’s top lobbyists left for other firms after it merged with the larger law firm Squire Sanders in 2014. Boggs died the same year.
Lott lobbied for 20 of the firm’s clients in the first quarter of this year, including Nissan, SpaceX, UnitedHealth, Airlines for America, United Technologies, and the National Association of Broadcasters, according to disclosure filings. While the firm said in its statement that it wanted to change up its leadership, it was still promoting Lott as a leader of its lobbying team as recently as last year.
Lott has been well-known and respected in Republican circles for decades.
He’ll more than likely land on his feet and continue lobbying to help conservatives.