Rejected: Senate denies Burris

posted at 12:20 pm on January 6, 2009 by Allahpundit

No dramatic standoff at the chamber door, alas. The deed was done quietly in the Senate secretary’s office, the absence of the secretary of state’s signature on the appointment being the casus belli. Franken won’t be seated today either, but since his victory’s (almost) a fait accompli, he can afford to stay away and spare Reid the angst. Burris’s chances are dicier so he has to push — but he might have pushed too hard:

The staffers said the tenor of the Burris-Reid meeting on Wednesday will depend on Burris’s actions on Tuesday. Some Democrats have become exasperated by Burris’s aggressive approach and repeated references to race…

“If you embarrass someone in public and cause a scene one day, your meeting with that person typically doesn’t go well the next day,” one senior aide said. “How can he expect to be a respected legislator who will get help with his agenda if he’s using threats and lawsuits to force his way into the chamber?”…

Meanwhile, a senior Democratic aide said efforts by [Rep. Bobby] Rush to win support for Burris behind the scenes seem to have met with limited success, as the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) does not appear to be rallying behind Burris. One aide said Rush’s use of racial rhetoric at Burris’s press conference last month hurt the effort more than it helped.

“There is a sense that Rush is largely alone,” the aide said. “He kind of sealed his fate with his incendiary talk.”

“Never in my whole political career have I brought up race,” said Burris to The Hill, which is true if you exclude (a) the time he called two opponents in Illinois “non-qualified white boys” and (b) his penchant for likening his mayoral campaign against Daley to MLK’s assassination and elections in South Africa. Seeing how they both suffer from convenient memory loss, his meeting of the minds tomorrow with Reid should be one for the ages. Exit question: What do the two of them have to negotiate over? I assume The Hill’s right, that Dingy Harry will agree to seat him if he promises not to run in 2010. Is Reid really so stupid that he’d take someone as shamelessly ambitious as Roland Burris at his word?

Update: I’m not sure what Junior’s angle is here, but he’s not making any friends at the top by mumbling about the issue becoming “racialized.”



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As I said on an earlier post, “this will set a bad precedent”. Harry Reid can’t/shouldn’t have this kind of power.

Tommy_G on January 6, 2009 at 12:25 PM

I’m buying stock in Orville Redenbacher.

CurtZHP on January 6, 2009 at 12:25 PM

I’m buying stock in Orville Redenbacher.

CurtZHP on January 6, 2009 at 12:25 PM

When I was a kid, he lived just down the road from my family.

Tommy_G on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

I thought that the Secretary of State was obligated to sign off on this appointment. I thought the SoS’s role was just to certify that the governor chose an eligible person, not to approve it in some way.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

Rush just called it a “giant evaporation of Hope and Change”. Obama’s chickens may be coming home to roost.

kingsjester on January 6, 2009 at 12:30 PM

I want this farce to be dramatized by Gary Coleman.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:31 PM

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

It certainly appears that both the Illinois SoS and Reid have far exceeded their authority. Although it can bring some pleasure to watch the Democrats turn on their own, this is another indication of their lawlessness. Lawlessness that meets no justice and exercise of power that goes unchallenged are bad for our Republic.

DrMagnolias on January 6, 2009 at 12:31 PM

When I was a kid, he lived just down the road from my family.

Tommy_G on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

Did it smell like popcorn in the neighborhood?
LOL. had to ask.

Badger40 on January 6, 2009 at 12:32 PM

Obama’s chickens may be coming home to roost.

kingsjester on January 6, 2009 at 12:30 PM

Isn’t that racist?
Nevermind….

Badger40 on January 6, 2009 at 12:33 PM

Time for the GOP Senators to rally behind Burris.

mankai on January 6, 2009 at 12:33 PM

Reid et al will cave. Blago has sent his warning to the Illinois impeachment folks and re-established his street creds. I also noticed on Sunday Fox that Brit Hume isn’t too enamoured of Fitzgerald’s track record. Hot Rod just may pull this off.

a capella on January 6, 2009 at 12:33 PM

The complaint for mandamus that Burris has filed cites 15 ILCS 305/5 5(1) requiring the SoS to “sign and affix the seal of the State to all commissions required by law to be issued by the governor.”

It seems really clear to me that the SoS has no choice and could be (should be) impeached for failing to certify the governor’s appointment. (I guess an exception would be if Burris didn’t prove he was a U.S. citizen or something… /sarc)

It is really scary to me how willing Democrats are to ignore the law when it suits them, even against members of their own party.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:35 PM

Dem statesmanship at its finest. What a bunch of clowns.

califcon on January 6, 2009 at 12:35 PM

I guess he isn’t so magic after all.

Firebird on January 6, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Although it can bring some pleasure to watch the Democrats turn on their own, this is another indication of their lawlessness. Lawlessness that meets no justice and exercise of power that goes unchallenged are bad for our Republic.

DrMagnolias on January 6, 2009 at 12:31 PM

You were posting as I was typing my last post. I agree with you whole heartedly. I really despair of how Republicans will ever regain power with the Democrats behaving so unethically and the media in the tank.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:37 PM

Are the clown cars hybrid?

grapeknutz on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

Theatre of the Absurd.

With these clowns in charge, will our great country still be around in 2010? A Democrat governor appoints an old guard Democrat to fill the new Democrat president’s Senate seat, and the Democrat Senate majority leader refuses to seat him.

rbj on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

This is a late Christmas present from our Democrat friends.

Of course it bears pointing out that the people standing in the schoolhouse door blocking blacks from an education also were white Democrats. They are at least consistent.

wildcat84 on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

Although it can bring some pleasure to watch the Democrats turn on their own, this is another indication of their lawlessness. Lawlessness that meets no justice and exercise of power that goes unchallenged are bad for our Republic.

DrMagnolias on January 6, 2009 at 12:31 PM

That’s an excellent point. And Y-not is right–this open, flagrant attitude of contempt for the law is scary.

Many of us probably always figured there were back room deals going on, but now this is done in full view.

INC on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

I guess he isn’t so magic after all.

Firebird on January 6, 2009 at 12:36 PM

His promises of hope & change do seem to have gone ‘puff’, don’t they?

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:39 PM

what a buncha narcissitic loons — burris is the one who pre-emptively lawyered up — let him rent a suite down the hall from duh1 & sit his butt there until dingy harry is “appeased” enough for him to “enter the chamber” …

/ladies and gentlemen, the 111th congress …
//sigh …

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

If anyone had been watching Burris on the Chicago news stations last night, he was swaggering around like a strutting peacock, declaring that he WAS the junior Senator from Illinois and making it sound like he wasn’t going to back down no matter what.

So this morning, the swagger is gone, the eyes are downcast, and the man has single-handedly managed to publicly humiliate and embarrass himself, this time with the entire Nation watching.

If he has any decency left in him, he will fly back to Chicago today, walk into Blagojevich’s office and tell him to take his Senate appointment and shove it where the sun shines not.

Then Thursday, he can sit down with the Impeachment Committee meeting in Springfield to tell them all the details behind how he got the appointment from Blagojevich in the first place.

Then maybe the man will retire and just go quietly away.

pilamaye on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Obama must be beside himself with grief and worry:

Burris

Blago

Richardson

Gaza

Naw! O is the one.

Nothing fazes the one.

He has no brain.

izoneguy on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Obama’s chickens may be coming home to roost.

kingsjester on January 6, 2009 at 12:30 PM

Isn’t that racist?
Nevermind….

Badger40 on January 6, 2009 at 12:33 PM

Only if you’re a chicken. :)

rockbend on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

I guess he isn’t so magic after all.

Firebird on January 6, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Zing!

loudmouth883 on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Just heard that Bobby Rush made a statement in which the reason Burris wasn’t seated was … hold on, cuz this may come as a shock, racist.

Gotta’ dig Rush, he’s got a full deck of race cards and can deal ‘em out like a champ.

yo on January 6, 2009 at 12:42 PM

Harry Reid needs to go. Nevada, I beg you to put this man out to pasture.

sherry on January 6, 2009 at 12:43 PM

Many of us probably always figured there were back room deals going on, but now this is done in full view.

INC on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

I feel like I’m living in a banana republic.

The weird thing is that the Obama supporters worshippers at my husband’s college are becoming slightly disenchanted by him, but not for any of the reasons that bother us. They’re upset by things like Rick Warren’s involvement in the inauguration and some of the appointments of former Clinton supporters, but something like ignoring the laws of the land doesn’t penetrate at all. I’d say it’s a generational thing, but I don’t know enough older Obama supporters to comment on that.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:43 PM

Democrats certainly have the DNA required to stand in the doorway of an institution to block black Americans from entering.

Labamigo on January 6, 2009 at 12:44 PM

“sherry on January 6, 2009 at 12:43 PM”

the nv gop needs to get their ’10 candidate lined up NOW …

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:44 PM

Gotta’ dig Rush, he’s got a full deck of race cards and can deal ‘em out like a champ.

yo on January 6, 2009 at 12:42 PM

The very term “race card” is racist, as it implies that blacks are shiftless gamblers.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:45 PM

I feel like I’m living in a banana republic.

How racist. You wouldn’t say that if the PE was white. Next you’ll be accusing Obama of ‘monkeying’ around with the economy.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:46 PM

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:44 PM

I know nothing of Nevada politicians. Is there anyone waiting in the wings to take him on?

sherry on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM

Lawlessness that meets no justice and exercise of power that goes unchallenged are bad for our Republic.

DrMagnolias on January 6, 2009 at 12:31 PM

Absolutely correct. Will the Republicans in IL, MN,and in Congress step up and do what’s right?

Red State State of Mind on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM

Can you imagine if Dingy Harry Reid was a Republican the MSM would be yelling RACE 24/7… But look, what we are getting is the MSM yelling a Burris to STFU and go away and stop making things hard for the MESSIAH…

This is too funny, if it did not have such dire impact on the America that I love, I’d be happy right now…

We are SO screwed…

Mark Garnett on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM

The very term “race card” is racist, as it implies that blacks are shiftless gamblers.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:45 PM

Nah, just Bobby.

yo on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM

What a sad, sad state of affairs for our State of Illinois – yes, I live here! The Chicago Machine – it is so brazen now that it does operate not behind closed doors, but right under the big theater lights! If this is the hope and change the Great One (oh, he, too, is from said Chicago Machine) talked about? Then I truly fear for our country! This is a great country – probably the greatest on earth – I can say that because I used to be a citizen elsewhere. I embraced this country – could have stayed a resident alien for the rest of my life! I am so sad to see our own citizens throwing away the best gift anyone could ever have gotten – Freedom to even say and do the most stupid things!!!!
BUT this also gives us a chance to start taking things back. I keep telling people around me that we have to start HERE, in our towns, communities, to take things back! Then we can branch out to our counties, states and then, finally to our beloved country! We cannot start on the top – the Dems have done so this time around, and they will find out that they cannot keep what they have taken! All it takes is resolve on the conservative side, and we CAN take this country back!

mkosin on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM

It’s fun to see the democrats self-destruct.

jencab on January 6, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Exit question: What do the two of them have to negotiate over? I assume The Hill’s right, that Dingy Harry will agree to seat him if he promises not to run in 2010. Is Reid really so stupid that he’d take someone as shamelessly ambitious as Roland Burris at his word?

Maybe, but I think they’re just putting on a show to absolve themselves of any guilt should it turn out that Burris is/was involved in Blagojevich’s pay-to-play schemes.

Big S on January 6, 2009 at 12:48 PM

“How can he expect to be a respected legislator who will get help with his agenda if he’s using threats and lawsuits to force his way into the chamber?”…

The same question could be asked about Franken, substituting the ‘force his way into the chamber’ line for his whole adult life.

BadgerHawk on January 6, 2009 at 12:49 PM

I’m pretty shocked by this episode.

My instincts told me that they would try to paint Burris as being a good guy that was caught in the middle of a bad situation.

Then, after some professional wrestler type theatrics, they would admit that although they hate corruption they would have to seat him. It is the law, after all.

This guy must have truly pissed them off.

Dorvillian on January 6, 2009 at 12:50 PM

So this morning, the swagger is gone, the eyes are downcast, and the man has single-handedly managed to publicly humiliate and embarrass himself, this time with the entire Nation watching.

Then maybe the man will retire and just go quietly away.

pilamaye on January 6, 2009 at 12:41 PM

I don’t see Burris, or even in some ways Blago, as the culprit in this. The culprits are the Illinois legislators (democrats) who are stalling on removing Blagojevich and/or enacting legislation to require a special election and the Senate democrats who are working in collusion with the Secretary of State to ignore the law.

They are more concerned with hanging on to their power to hand-pick a political lackey (ok, their political lackey instead of Blago’s) and protect Obama (hence the calls for Blago to resign to avoid any risk that damaging things will come out in the impeachment trial) than they are concerned with ensuring that the people of Illinois have two senators… or, worse yet, that the people of Illinois get the chance to vote for their senator sooner rather than later.

Disgusting.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:50 PM

Now do you trolls on this site understand that we, conservatives – and only speaking for thisconservative; were not being “partisan” the past 2 – 4 years to point out Harry Reid’s morally bankrupt positions are because he is morally bankrupt?

I probably disagree with Sen. Burris’ political positions; but he was appointed legally and it’s the democrats denying him his seat for Harry Reid et. al.’s power.

Branch Rickey on January 6, 2009 at 12:50 PM

The same question could be asked about Franken, substituting the ‘force his way into the chamber’ line for his whole adult life.

BadgerHawk on January 6, 2009 at 12:49 PM

Amen to that.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:51 PM

I thought that the Secretary of State was obligated to sign off on this appointment. I thought the SoS’s role was just to certify that the governor chose an eligible person, not to approve it in some way.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

You are probably right. Luckily, there is a straightforward solution: Gov. Balagojevich can ask the Illinois legislature to impeach the Secretary of State. When that happens, the legislature can name a replacement who can then sign the appointment. I wish the Governor and the Senator-Designate good luck on that project.

factoid on January 6, 2009 at 12:51 PM

“sherry on January 6, 2009 at 12:47 PM”

sadly, no idea either …

the mayor of LV seems to be an ok guy but i’m pretty sure he’s a donk …

if ensign can basically come out of nowhere and defeat jimmuh’s son last time out it should be pretty easy to find some body with some appeal to reno and LV and wide appeal to the rural areas — this isn’t rocket science …

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Seeing a 71 year old declare he’s the junior anything is entertainment enough!

Little Boomer on January 6, 2009 at 12:53 PM

The very term “race card” is racist, as it implies that blacks are shiftless gamblers.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:45 PM

Wow. That’s a new one (to me, at least). I thought it just implied that racial issues were being used as a trump card – by anyone, of any race.

Let’s just advance to “Go”, collect our two-hundred bucks, and declare everything racist right now.

capitalist piglet on January 6, 2009 at 12:54 PM

What a joke our government has become. Imagine what these clowns are capable of pushing through legislation in the next few years. Or imagine the legislation that’s needed that won’t go anywhere. They’re inventing the rules as they go along, and to hell with the law.

Obama doesn’t stand a chance, this is the Reid/Pelosi Show and they’re going to run right over him.

scalleywag on January 6, 2009 at 12:55 PM

Will this uncivil conduct make it easier or harder for the Dems to do the same thing to GOP legislators in the next two years?

njcommuter on January 6, 2009 at 12:55 PM

I feel like I’m living in a banana republic.

How racist. You wouldn’t say that if the PE was white. Next you’ll be accusing Obama of ‘monkeying’ around with the economy.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 12:46 PM

I’m sorry. I was intending to be fruitist. Let me fix it.

I feel like I’m living in a banana [insert member of the stone fruit family here picked by our helpful friends from south of the (porous) border] republic.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:56 PM

I don’t see Burris, or even in some ways Blago, as the culprit in this. The culprits are the Illinois legislators (democrats) who are stalling on removing Blagojevich and/or enacting legislation to require a special election and the Senate democrats who are working in collusion with the Secretary of State to ignore the law.

They are more concerned with hanging on to their power to hand-pick a political lackey (ok, their political lackey instead of Blago’s) and protect Obama (hence the calls for Blago to resign to avoid any risk that damaging things will come out in the impeachment trial) than they are concerned with ensuring that the people of Illinois have two senators… or, worse yet, that the people of Illinois get the chance to vote for their senator sooner rather than later.

Disgusting.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:50 PM

The IL SoS should be impeached for failing to do his duty.
The citizens of IL are being dis-enfranchised by the US Senate Democrats and the IL SoS.

Red State State of Mind on January 6, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Does Congress get to tell the Illinois SOS what to sign and what not to? OR is that another infraction from the fools on the hill?

scalleywag on January 6, 2009 at 1:00 PM

This is so racist..

I am serious
Apparently from all that ihave heard this man is over qualified..
And because he is a black man appointed by a white governor in the middle of a scandle he is being denied his rightful SEAT???

Where is the Reverend al sharp tongue
where is jesses jacksome..?
Where is the ACLU?
Where is the Outrage?

MORONS

jcila on January 6, 2009 at 1:00 PM

The IL Supreme Court will likely force the IL SofS to do the right thing.

Reid’s “compromises” amuse me even more than. There’s no way that someone as delightfully deluded as Burris would step down after two years. So purchase that popcorn and get ready for some more political theatre, topped off with lots of race-baiting goodness.

Illinidiva on January 6, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Dem statesmanship at its finest. What a bunch of clowns.

califcon on January 6, 2009 at 12:35 PM

Are the clown cars hybrid?

grapeknutz on January 6, 2009 at 12:38 PM

Ab Fab! Cheers! ROFL!

Branch Rickey on January 6, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Reud and company are making bigger fools of themselves than they already are. Legally they don’t have a prayer of keeping him from being seated. He has been legally appointed by a sitting governor and meets constitutional requirements. All of the sideline issues don’t matter.

duff65 on January 6, 2009 at 1:02 PM

How is ‘pay-to-play’ politics so different from the usual walking around money (to vote in major cities) the constant work of the Democrat machines and, indeed, most promises of the Democrats for goodies from the treasury?

And to you stinking liberals who defile this thread, tax cuts are NOT the same thing. Tax reduction lets people keep their own money. NOT take coin from their fellow citizens. This is despite Juan’s ignoring The One’s comment justifying (or excusing) his (The One’s) millions in earmarks since there was a $275 Billion tax cut.

IlikedAUH2O on January 6, 2009 at 1:02 PM

I thought that the Secretary of State was obligated to sign off on this appointment. I thought the SoS’s role was just to certify that the governor chose an eligible person, not to approve it in some way.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

Yes… isn’t it amusing that this Sec of State will NOT certify a clearly legal appointment…

And yet would not even ask Obama for his birth cert or Citizenship docs?

Rule of law is done folks…. we are now officialy living in a Banana Republic.

Romeo13 on January 6, 2009 at 1:03 PM

Rule of law is done folks…. we are now officialy living in a Banana Republic.

Romeo13 on January 6, 2009 at 1:03 PM

Yep. BTW, we decided “banana republic” is racist. Don’t make me report you to the thought police.

Y-not on January 6, 2009 at 1:05 PM

Tommy_G on January 6, 2009 at 12:27 PM

how’s valparaiso doinfg these days?

UNREPENTANT CONSERVATIVE CAPITOLIST on January 6, 2009 at 1:08 PM

This is truly funny.

A black democrat denied entrance by a white democrat.

How Delicious!!! How delicious indeed.

madmonkphotog on January 6, 2009 at 1:19 PM

madmonkphotog on January 6, 2009 at 1:19 PM

Well…he’s kinda grey & dingy really…

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 1:21 PM

the nv gop needs to get their ‘10 candidate lined up NOW …

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:44 PM

There is no candidate…

the mayor of LV seems to be an ok guy but i’m pretty sure he’s a donk …

You mean the Tanqueray Gin salesman?? Sir Oscar?? The mobbed up mayor?? Ok guy?? Snort….

if ensign can basically come out of nowhere and defeat jimmuh’s son last time out it should be pretty easy to find some body with some appeal to reno and LV and wide appeal to the rural areas — this isn’t rocket science …

Buckaroo on January 6, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Senator Ensign was Congressman Ensign and a well respected businessman in Las Vegas before running for the Senate in 1998, barely losing to Senator Two-Face. He beat ambulance chaser Ed Bernstein handily in 2000. He didn’t come out of nowhere to retain his seat against the junior Carter. It was no contest, 55% to 41%. Carter is a fake Nevadan. Sadly we don’t have a candidate with any stature right now to contest Land Office Harry’s seat….

ScottG on January 6, 2009 at 1:25 PM

As I said on an earlier post, “this will set a bad precedent”. Harry Reid can’t/shouldn’t have this kind of power.

Tommy_G on January 6, 2009 at 12:25 PM

I was going to make the same point. Soon the Democratic leadership will just decide willy-nilly (I like that phrase) who gets into the Senate and who doesn’t.

OneGyT on January 6, 2009 at 1:41 PM

OneGyT on January 6, 2009 at 1:41 PM

Reid is trying to usurp power by fraudulently misconstruing A1S5C1 of the Constitution. There’s already SCOTUS precedent in opposition to Reid’s devious bullshit.
All Reid can legitimately do is encourage the use of A1S5C2 to get rid of Burris…and then the burning crosses will be on display for all to see.

LimeyGeek on January 6, 2009 at 1:47 PM

If a Secretary of State has the power to veto a Governor’s appointment, that person becomes the ultimate decider of who gets appointed to what.

If the President (Pro Tem) of the Senate can reject legally appointed Senators then he becomes the ultimate decider of who a Governor appoints to the Senate.

Both of these set a dangerous precedent. If the laws on the books say that the Governor of Illinois appoints the replacement, that’s his right (and duty). If the law says something about ‘except when under a cloud of suspicion’ (which I doubt it does as that’s very hard to define legally), they’ve got nothing.

The Illinois Governor gave the State Senate the option to change how things work and make it a special election instead, but, they didn’t want to make it a permanent change.

He doesn’t seem like a good guy and both Blago and Burris appear to come from the “what’s in it for me” school of politics, but, both of them are fully in their rights to appoint, be appointed and get certified and seated. The Dems best bet now is to seat him as quickly as possible and hope that the ADD public will forget about this in 2 years.

JadeNYU on January 6, 2009 at 2:31 PM

all this mentioning of Harry Reid over and over… making me feel like puking. He’s up next year right? Please Nevada, get it right this time…

maineconservative on January 6, 2009 at 2:38 PM

i’m fast becoming a blago & burris fan.

kelley in virginia on January 6, 2009 at 3:07 PM