Chester Trent Lott, Sr. (born October 9, 1941) is a former United States Senator from Mississippi. He has served in numerous leadership positions in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, including House Minority Whip, Senate Majority Leader, Senate Minority Leader, and Senate Minority Whip.
On December 20, 2002, after significant controversy following what were viewed by some as racially insensitive comments, and by others as respectful comments that did not reference race, regarding Strom Thurmond's presidential candidacy, Lott resigned as Senate Minority Leader in the Senate. In December 2007, he resigned from the Senate entirely and became a Washington-based lobbyist. Lott ruled out any health concerns affecting his resignation. At a press conference on December 31, 2007, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour appointed Roger Wicker to fill temporarily the Senate seat vacated by Lott. On November 4, 2008, a special election Senate race was held to replace him. The election was won by Republican Roger Wicker.
Lott was born in Grenada, Mississippi. His father, Chester Paul Lott, was a shipyard worker; his mother, Iona Watson, was a schoolteacher. He attended college at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, where he obtained an undergraduate degree in public administration in 1963 and a law degree in 1967. He served as a Field Representative for Ole Miss and was president of his fraternity, Sigma Nu. Lott was also an Ole Miss cheerleader, coincidentally on the same team with U.S. Senator Thad Cochran. He married Patricia Thompson on December 27, 1964. The couple has two children: Chester Trent "Chet" Lott, Jr., and Tyler Lott.