Democrats may block Burris from seat -- physically

Let’s hope so, if only for the comedy gold of Bobby Rush accusing Harry Reid afterwards of standing in the schoolhouse door.

Burris will not be allowed on the Senate floor, according to this aide and a Senate Democratic leadership aide.

The aide familiar with Senate Democratic leaders’ plans said if Burris tries to enter the Senate chamber, the Senate doorkeeper will stop Burris. 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, said the aide.

“They (police) probably won’t arrest him” but they would call the sergeant-at-arms,” the aide said.

When asked about what would happen if he shows up and tries to be seated, Burris told the Chicago Tribune that he’s, “not going to create a scene in Washington.” He added, “We hope it’s negotiated out prior to my going to Washington.”

An intriguing subplot, per CNN: They can’t block governors from the floor, so if Blagojevich decides to bring the circus to town, their options are either to let him in or adjourn until he goes away (or is impeached by the state legislature, of course). As amazing to me as his narcissism is, though, I’m almost as amazed at Burris’s shamelessness in enabling him. Surely he knows he’s being used by Blago to make his Democratic enemies choke on the racial politics of the appointment; surely he understands the grief this is causing Obama and the party. At least one other black Democrat in Illinois was offered the appointment but was too honorable to accept, declaring tactfully that, ahem, “Roland was a bit braver than I am.” Such is Burris’s “bravery” that he’s now prepared to endure a court battle if need be, just to put an extra line on that mausoleum wall. “[H]e’s at least six parts ego to one part performance,” said one Trib columnist yesterday; if it’s true that the ratio’s only six to one, his performance must be stratospheric.

Consensus legal opinion is that Reid’s stuck with him, but see Slate for a contrarian view arguing that the Senate’s constitutionally entitled to examine the fairness of appointments. I like the idea near the end of passing a resolution now stating that Burris will be expelled by a two-thirds vote even if he wins in court. All 50 Senate Democrats signed a letter to Blago a few weeks ago warning him not to appoint anyone; presumably the nine new members soon to be seated feel the same way. Surely they can find eight Republicans to make it happen.