Breaking: Burris admits agreeing to raise funds for Blagojevich

posted at 1:27 pm on February 17, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

By my count, Burris now has four different versions of his contacts with Rod Blagojevich, and this one will embarrass Democrats the most.   Over the weekend, Burris strongly implied that he refused to raise money for Rod Blagojevich in exchange for an appointment to fill Barack Obama’s empty Senate seat.  Today, he admits that he agreed to Robert Blagojevich’s demand:

U.S. Sen. Roland Burris has acknowledged he sought to raise campaign funds for then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich at the request of the governor’s brother at the same time he was making a pitch to be appointed to the Senate seat previously held by President Barack Obama.

Burris’ latest comments in Peoria Monday night were the first time he has publicly said he was actively trying to raise money for Blagojevich. Previously Burris has left the impression that he always balked at the issue of raising money for the governor because of his interest in the Senate appointment.

In comments to reporters after appearing at a Democratic dinner, the senator several times contradicted his latest under-oath affidavit that he quietly filed with the Illinois House impeachment panel earlier this month. That affidavit was itself an attempt to clean up his live, sworn testimony to the panel Jan. 8, when he omitted his contacts with several Blagojevich insiders.

So Burris has gone from “no contacts”, to “talking with friends”, to speaking to Blagojevich’s brother but refusing his pay-for-play demand, all the way to playing along with Blago on his “f*****g valuable thing.”  What exactly did Burris say?

“So some time shortly after Obama was elected, the brother called,” Burris said last night of Robert Blagojevich. “And now in the meantime, I’d talked to some people about trying to see if we could put a fund-raiser on. Nobody was—they said we aren’t giving money to the governor. And I said, ‘OK, you know, I can’t tell them what to do with their money.’”

“So when the (governor’s) brother called me back, I said, ‘Well, look Rob…I can’t raise any money from my friends. I said, maybe my partner and I, you can talk this over and see, could we go to some other people that we might be able to talk to that would help us out if we give–because we give a fundraiser in the law office, nobody going to show up. We’ll probably have a thousand dollars for you or something to that effect.’

This came at the same time that Burris was pestering Blagojevich aides for consideration for the appointment.  That may not be illegal, but it certainly appears unethical — and it certainly destroys the testimony that Burris gave the state legislature.  Not only did he fail to discuss the demands from Robert Blagojevich, he also failed to mention that he agreed to them.

Keep the popcorn coming, because I doubt that we’ve heard the final version of this story from Burris.


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Apparently the wiretaps are so incriminating that he’s sure he’s going down. It wouldn’t surprise me if there wasn’t enough to have the Obamessiah jailed as well but the federal government will never allow a president to go to jail.

The Constitution does not allow a standing President to go to jail. At best The One™ will be listed as an unindicted co-conspirator, ala Nixon. It will then be up to Congress to start impeachment proceedings or the people to put pressure on the Congress for those proceedings.

Hey maybe we can get Hillary’s ideas on the trial portion to be used here. You know, the one’s she tried to implement if Nixon had gone to trial in the Senate:

• No right to counsel

• No right to refuse self-incrimination

• No right to confront accusers

A regular star chamber she was looking at.

David in San Diego on February 17, 2009 at 2:43 PM

Maybe there’s a reason that Obama’s letting him keep his job.

misslizzi on February 17, 2009 at 2:39 PM

Ask J. Edgar Hoover how that works.

saiga on February 17, 2009 at 2:43 PM

The US is being governed on the left by the 3 stooges named Mother Superior Pelosi, Harry “It’s the GOP’s Fault” Reid and their Yorkie lapdog Barry.

On the right, we have the 3 amigos, Susan “I look better as a Brunette” Collins, Arlen “Doctors will not answer to the Government, even if WE did vote for that” Specter and Mount Olympia Snowe.

Now we have Roland “I can’t remember because of senile dementia (otherwise known as perjury)” Burris.

We are doomed.

Sweetness0726 on February 17, 2009 at 2:45 PM

We are doomed.

Sweetness0726 on February 17, 2009 at 2:45 PM

While I won’t disagree that those you mentioned are contemptible, disgusting politicians, I will say that I don’t think that we have gone from prosperity to ruin in the two or so years since the Republicans lost control of the Congress and the month or so since they lost the White House. I would argue that we were doomed when Republicans decided to disregard the Constitution completely and lost their thirst for freedom. Most Republicans are barely distinguishable from Democrats and I would argue that the entire lot, save a few exceptions, are worthless, power-hungry politicians who don’t care what you or the Constitution say.

We ARE doomed, that is for sure. But it isn’t simply because of Pelosi, Reid, Obama, Snowe, Collins, and Specter.

King of the Britons on February 17, 2009 at 2:58 PM

Queen Pelosi has an audience with the pope.
http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/new.php?n=15098
Sure hope and pray he excommunicates her.

OmahaConservative on February 17, 2009 at 2:59 PM

The Burris problem will be solved and swept under the rug by him agreeing not to run for office in 2010.

albill on February 17, 2009 at 3:13 PM

I KNEW I smelled something bad when Burris appeared on TV telling us that he was entitled to Barry Whosane’s Senate seat.
Let me know if they DO anything about this…in the meantime I’m working to educate myself and others on the EFCA. We might as well know what kind of hell we are entering.

Christine on February 17, 2009 at 3:15 PM

Burris should resign but he fits in so well with the rest of that political slime in Washington that I’m sure dirty Harry will insist that he stay.

rplat on February 17, 2009 at 1:43 PM

I’m sure dirty Harry has a whole new respect for Mr. Burris

anniekc on February 17, 2009 at 3:20 PM

We ARE doomed, that is for sure. But it isn’t simply because of Pelosi, Reid, Obama, Snowe, Collins, and Specter.

King of the Britons on February 17, 2009 at 2:58 PM

These 6 are the ones who will decide all legislation for the next 2 years or more. They will decide and given their record, we can shout till we are blue in the face and they will not listen.

With these 6 at the helm, we are doomed.

Sweetness0726 on February 17, 2009 at 3:22 PM

imagine what countries who dont like us very much must be thinking when they look at how we are running things here… its no wonder that N Korea and Iran are waving their jocks in our faces… every day on the world news our capitol is on tv with another embarrasing story. surely they must assume we are on the brink of ruin.

NavyDavy on February 17, 2009 at 3:22 PM

I’m surprised the Lame Stream Media aren’t referring to this as “Burrisgate” by now. Blago gets in one last shot and has one last laugh.

Say what you want about Nixon and Watergate but I don’t think politics have been any sleazier or more crooked in my (fifty-five) lifetime.

Now IS the time for literacy tests at the polling places if this is the best we can do.

greasywrench on February 17, 2009 at 3:48 PM

The Burris problem will be solved and swept under the rug by him agreeing not to run for office in 2010.

albill on February 17, 2009 at 3:13 PM

True, but the Dems wanted Blago to appoint someone who would run as the incumbent in 2010. Now the most they will have is an open seat if Burris doesn’t run, and if he insists on it, a candidate who probably won’t even have his own party’s backing. Could be a GOP pickup.

Obama’s old seat going GOP. Thanks to Blago. Heh.

Wethal on February 17, 2009 at 4:23 PM

Oh, man, this is not going to look good for Blagojavich, who’s been doing so well lately.

Tzetzes on February 17, 2009 at 4:51 PM

Are there any viable high profile Republicans with clean hands that have a serious stab at winning this seat in IL?

OmahaConservative on February 17, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Are there any viable high profile Republicans with clean hands that have a serious stab at winning this seat in IL?

OmahaConservative on February 17, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Mark Kirk (IL 10th)would have a good chance to win this seat. He was John Porter’s chief of staff. He is a social liberal and fiscal moderate with strong defense credentials as an officer in the Navy Reserves. Kirk announced he would
run if there were a special election for Obama’s seat, but he may duck the race if a strong Democrat announces. His district is trending Democratic but he remains personally popular and the congressional seat is relatively safe, for him.

It really depends on who runs for the Democrats. Lisa Madigan would beat Kirk easily, but she probably wants to be governor.

Ted Torgerson on February 17, 2009 at 7:22 PM

Yeah, yeah, yeah…that’s great.

When the hell is Tony Rezko going to decide he really doesn’t want to go to jail and start talking?

Or is he?

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 17, 2009 at 9:34 PM

Comment pages: 1 2