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Repercussion of Blago Naming Burris January 2, 2009

Posted by neoavatara in Politics.
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For Democrats, 2008 did not end well, in what was otherwise a banner year.  Gov. Blagojevich’s naming of Roland Burris threw a wrench into the well oiled machine that was the Obama inauguration.

Burris, for one, is convinced that the Senate opposition will dissolve, and that he will ultimately serve out the rest of Barack Obama’s senate term.  And he does have several Supreme Court Cases to back him up, the most recent the Powell case in 1969.

However, there is fierce opposition to Burris being seated.  And for once, there is broad bipartisan support.  The new Congress will be sworn in Tuesday. Burris, however, will have no floor privileges because Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will not certify his appointment. So what will the Senate do?  Filibuster, what they are best at.  They will likely refer the whole matter to the Rules committee, which in turn will slow the process to a halt. So in all possibility, on Tuesday Burris will be outside the Senate chamber door knocking, an no one is a-coming.  Should be a fun show, to see the mostly white Senate keep the first African-American to win statewide office in Illinois from taking a senate seat.

That said, this is a crisis created by the Democrats themselves.  Democrats, including President-elect Obama and future Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, knew that Blago was a corrupt as they get; and they sat and not only watched him be re-elected, but actually endorsed and helped him.   Now, when the proverbial rooster comes home to roost, they have no one to blame but themselves.   Additionally, the Democrat led Illinois State House had the chance to change the law, and allow voters to pick the Senate replacement instead of the Governor (something, ironically, that the current Governor supported), and failed to do so.

So what happens?  Well, the legal issue is complicated, and it is very well possible that the Senate does not have the power to block the appointment.  In which case, we will have Senator in the former seat of the President-elect, in which his appointment was named by a Governor who was taped asking for cash for said Senate seat, and the Democrats may not be able to do anything about it.  Additionally, Burris is far from a loved personality in Illinois.  So in two years, when up for re-election, the Republicans have a legitimate shot at what should be a guaranteed Democratic Senate lock.

In an otherwise dreary winter, this is the one source of enjoyment that Republicans have.



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