Sen. Wicker

Posted January 22, 2008 at 6:42pm

Former Rep. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) was formally sworn in as the newest Member of the Senate on Tuesday, a largely ceremonial move that simply cemented his replacement of Sen. Trent Lott (R).

[IMGCAP(1)]Wicker has officially served as a Senator since Dec. 31, when Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) tapped him as Lott’s replacement. Lott announced his surprise exit from the Senate in November, just one year into his fourth term.

He left the Senate to set up a new lobbying firm with former Sen. John Breaux (D-La.), called the Breaux Lott Leadership Group.

Wicker was serving his seventh term in the House before moving to the Senate.

Another Would-Be Appropriator. Colorado Rep. Marilyn Musgrave this week became the latest Republican to toss her hat into the crowded race for the Appropriations Committee vacancy created by Sen. Roger Wicker’s (R-Miss.) Senate appointment.

Musgrave joins GOP Reps. Jo Bonner (Ala.), Henry Brown (S.C.), Tom Cole (Okla.), Jeff Flake (Ariz.), Dave Reichert (Wash.) and Michael Turner (Ohio), who previously have expressed interest in the open slot.

Musgrave faces a competitive re-election contest, as does Reichert. Fiscal conservative groups have been campaigning hard for Flake, a strident opponent of earmarks.

Movin’ On Up. The nation’s economy may be hitting a rough patch, but the lobbying business is still chugging along with new hires. Visa USA has added former Smith-Free Group lobbyist Sarah Dumont, who starts Jan 28. Cybele Daley, a former Justice Department official, has joined Van Scoyoc Associates as vice president.

The National Association of Manufacturers has brought on Emily Stover DeRocco, a former Labor Department appointee, as president of the Manufacturing Institute’s National Center for the American Workforce. And the Podesta Group has hired Lantie Slenzak, formerly the legislative director for Rep. Gene Green (D-Texas), and Donnice Turner, a former legislative assistant to Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.).

— Erin P. Billings, Lauren W. Whittington and Kate Ackley