I spoke last night with some folks who know the Speaker very well and none of them believe Richardson had an “inappropriate relationship” with anyone. Some are convinced the rumor was started by a rival in the House Caucus. One is convinced the rumor sprung up because many politicians, including the Speaker, meet with lobbyists, sometimes in private. It’s very easy make an accusation because you think you see something – especially when political ambition is involved.
Also, someone asked in the comments why former Governors Barnes and Carter weren’t invited to the swearing in like Miller, Harris and Sanders were. Barnes was definitely invited and I imagine Carter was as well. Barnes turned down the invitation.