Bowers to resign from state Senate

State Senator Kathryn Bowers of Memphis, who is awaiting trial on federal corruption charges, said Monday she is resigning from the General Assembly.

"I'm resigning from the State Senate District 33," she said. "I'm also removing my name as the Democratic nominee to appear on the ballot in the November general election.

At a news conference at her Whitehaven home, Bowers said she is getting out of politics on the advice of her doctor, because of her health problems.

"It was very difficult for me to make this decision today," she said.  "By the same token, sometimes you have to make these hard decisions."

Bowers said her decision had nothing to do with her upcoming federal corruption trial.  She is one of eleven people, including five current or former state lawmakers, charged in the FBI's bribery investigation code named Tennessee Waltz.

Last week, Bowers' attorney, Bill Massey, told a federal judge she was not ready to go to trial.  Next week she is due back in court to let the judge know if she will go to trial, or seek a plea agreement with prosecutors.

Bowers would not comment about her case Monday.  She said her resignation will be effective September 1st.