Lott Defends Trips

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Sen. Trent Lott said he has been visited by over thirty delegations from Mississippi in just the past two weeks. He says the purpose is typically financial help.

"They don't just come up here and have a good time. Who wants to come to Washington when it's cold outside this time of year? And who wants to come to Washington under any conditions?" asked Lott. "They really don't. They come because they need help with certain things."

Lott said that's why the Meridian and Lauderdale County officials came to see him.

"In the case of the Meridian and Lauderdale County area, it's an interchange there that will lead to a new industrial park. In the case of the city, it has meant funds for your intermodal facility there, for the entertainment facilities you've got there that are fantastic in Meridian. Additional industrial sites, we're trying to help with that, so it has brought federal money to Meridian and Lauderdale County. Hopefully, there'll be more," said Lott.

"But the main thing is hopefully it will lead to some more opportunities for jobs and opportunity for people in that area," Lott said.

Three members of the board of supervisors and mayor John Robert Smith were in the local delegation.

On another subject, Lott was asked if investing money to lure companies such as Nissan to our state is worth it? His answer was yes.

"We've been poor for 140 years. Do we want to be poor for the next 140? Let's take a chance," said Lott. "Let's get out there and go for it and I believe that so passionately that I think you can probably see it. I think we're going to see some real progress over the next four years."

The senator said the entire state will benefit from investments in economic opportunity.