Next week, Congressional’s from all over the US will be heading back to work in Washington D.C.
Well, most of them anyway.
I live in Illinois and like most Illinoisians, I am in a quandary over who will be my Senator.
Here is the latest on the quest to fill Barack Obama’s seat with Roland Burris.
Just as predicted and promised, the man tapped by Illinois’ embattled governor to fill an open U.S. Senate seat will be turned away if he arrives for Tuesday’s inauguration of new members, according to two Democratic aides.
Democrats in the Senate have always said that have and will use their authority to refuse to accept anyone appointed by Blagojevich. No matter who and how well qualified. The issue is that they do not think Blagojevich should have the authority to choose this person since his arrest on December 9 by federal authorities of corruption, including allegedly trying to sell Obama’s seat for personal gain.
Blagojevich, who denies wrongdoing and has ignored calls to resign. So, he named Burris — a Democrat and a former Illinois state comptroller and attorney general, to serve the last two years of Obama’s Senate term.
Here’s what they say will happen.
The first Democratic aide said if Burris tries to enter the Senate chamber on Tuesday, the Senate doorkeeper will stop him. If Burris were to persist, either trying to force his way onto the Senate floor or refusing to leave and causing a scene, U.S. Capitol police would stop him, the aide said.
“They [police] probably won’t arrest him,” but they would call the Senate’s sergeant-at-arms, the aide said.
Burris has indicated he intends to be at the Senate on Tuesday.
“We hope it’s negotiated out prior to my going to Washington,” he added, according to the Tribune
Burris told CNN that he was “certainly going to make contacts with the leadership to let them know that the governor of Illinois has made a legal appointment, and that I am currently the junior senator for the state of Illinois.”
Why would Burris get in the middle of this political drama?
Burris said earlier in December that the charges against Blagojevich outline “appalling” and “reprehensible” behavior. He said in an interview this week that he “absolutely” stands by those statements, but that the governor remains innocent until proven guilty. Burris also wouldn’t say whether he thinks Blagojevich should resign.
Burris has also not rebuffed the remarks of Representative Bobby Rush, who appeared to play the race card at Blagojevich’s press conference Tuesday by noting that the new US Senate that takes office Tuesday does not have a black member and by saying that Senate Democrats should not “hang and lynch the appointee as you try to castigate the appointer.”
“It is a fact, there are no African-Americans in the United States Senate,” Burris, the first African American elected statewide in Illinois, said on NBC’s “Today.” “Is it racism that is taking place? That’s a question that someone may raise.”
So, just what is the fight about and just how many fights are there?
I just want to get to the Obama inauguration already.