Not just Jackson, though. He also warned him away from Rep. Danny Davis and State Sen. Emil Jones but assured him that Tammy Duckworth and AG Lisa Madigan would be acceptable.
Fun fact: Jackson, Davis and Jones are black, Duckworth and Madigan aren’t. Over to you, Bobby Rush!
Sources say the Senate majority leader pushed against Jackson and Davis — both democratic congressmen from Illinois — and against Jones — the Illinois Senate president who is the political godfather of President-elect Barack Obama — because he did not believe the three men were electable. He feared losing the seat to a Republican in a future election…
Sources believe that at least portions of the phone conversations are on tape…
“Congressman Jackson was encouraged that two independent statewide polls confirmed that he was the most popular Democrat to succeed Barack,” Jackson spokesman Rick Bryant said. “The polls also showed he was in a strong position to win reelection in 2010, drawing strong support from virtually every demographic group.”
Shed no tears for Dingy Harry over the demagoguery to come. He sowed the wind; let him reap the whirlwind. As for Burris, we’re on track to have him turned away from the Senate floor on Tuesday when everyone else is sworn in: Evidently, unless the Illinois secretary of state changes his mind and signs the appointment certification, he’ll be denied entry. If the certification is signed, he’ll be admitted but an objection will be made on the floor to his swearing-in and the matter referred to the Rules Committee, where they’ll sit on it for 90 days to buy the state legislature time to undo the appointment. Exit question one: Why does Reid think Jackson can’t win a statewide race? He was a co-chair of Obama’s campaign. More than anyone else, he can count on Superman to stump for him in 2010. Exit question two: Assuming the Burris appointment ends up quashed, aren’t the big winners … Jackson, Davis, and Jones? The lieutenant governor wouldn’t dare pick a white candidate to replace a black appointee who was blocked, and they’re the three frontrunners. Smart money’s on Davis, who isn’t tainted by a cameo in the federal case against Blagojevich and who had the dignity to reject Blago’s offer before Burris accepted.
Update: An unlikely ally for Bobby Rush: John Cornyn!
“For the last several weeks, Senator Reid has led the charge to deny the people of Illinois a voice in choosing their next U.S. senator in a special election,” Cornyn said in a Saturday afternoon statement. “Now we learn that Senator Reid also took the extraordinary step to lobby against two sitting U.S. congressmen and the state senate Majority Leader in Illinois, and instead told Governor Blagojevich that he supported an appointment for an individual [Duckworth] who recently lost a U.S. House election.”
“The people of Illinois deserve a simple explanation from Senator Reid – why does he believe these three Illinois officeholders are ‘unelectable’ to the U.S. Senate?” Cornyn added.