January 9th, 2009
04:25 PM ET
11 years ago

Senate Dems weighing next moves on Burris

(CNN) - An aide to Sen. Dick Durbin tells us he is expected to say at his press conference later today that even though the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled Roland Burris doesn’t need the secretary of state’s signature to make his appointment official, Senate rules still require it - and congressional leaders don’t see a way to seat him without it.

But aides to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid say their lawyers are still looking at the ruling, and deliberating. They point to a passage in the court's Friday decision that suggests an alternative way to authenticate the certificate of appointment.

Separately, Democratic aides say they are still hoping that impeachment proceedings for Gov. Rod Blagojevich keep moving - and note that the moment he leaves office, the issue is moot: if the state's lieutenant governor moves into the top spot, he will sign an election certificate for either Burris or another candidate. That certificate would then be signed by Secretary of State Jesse White, since Gov. Rod Blagojevich's name will no longer be involved.


Filed under: Dick Durbin • Harry Reid • Roland Burris
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Third Party '09

    In an interview this week, Ill Secretary of State, White said he would sign the document only if ordered to by the court, or requested to do so by Mr. Obama. I'm a little disturbed that this has become less of an issue on whether Burris is qualified and more about who the Senate decides can be part of their exclusive club or what Obamabots want.

    January 9, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  2. Simmy

    The next move: open the doors and let him in. Case closed.

    January 9, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  3. Rick

    Blago has already exposed Harry Reid for the irrelevent gnat that he is. If the dems aren't careful Blago just may spill the beans on some or all of The Great Obama's dirty laundry.

    It's going to be a fun 4 years watching this clown show implode.

    January 9, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  4. TW, oregon

    Boy those dem boys play childish games. Who cares what the constitution says. It sure ain't gonna stop the dems from swinging their weight around. Makes me sick.

    January 9, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  5. James Johnson

    OK, fine... Jesus, are there not more pressing and more important issues. I would hate to think that my elected officials are burning time on this issue. Give that man a break. Let's get on with more important issues like the economy and job losses. How about the Pipe Designer bail out. I need a bail out now. Low finances... Come on guys... let's focus !

    James Johnson
    Houston, Texas

    January 9, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  6. Keith, FL

    Why is the Senate weighing anything? They're not going to do anything. They act like such wimps. Anybody can stampede the Senate.

    They'd better not create problems for Barack, after they allowed George Bush to run a mack truck through the halls of Congress.

    January 9, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  7. John F. Leech

    Mr. Burris may, or may not, be the best candidate for this open Senate seat, but that isn't the issue.

    The issue solely concerns the current Illinois Governor's attempts to "sell" this appointment for his own personal gain.

    The Senate should NOT allow this selection to go forward.

    This vacant Senate seat should be selected by whatever process Illinois decides, once Gov. B. is removed from office.

    January 9, 2009 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  8. Dee

    This is getting ridiculous. Have we reached the point where we need a grown-up to resolve which takes priority between the 17th Amendment of the Constitution and the Rules of the Senate?

    January 9, 2009 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  9. Rick

    Lets see, I think its racist for Burris to use his color to get the position and I believe that it is discrimination against people who want a truthfull election for Obama's replacement, but I see that if you are black and scream racism you get you way, but soon it will change and it will be the whites and native americans screaming racism..........

    January 9, 2009 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  10. Brooklyn

    Burris will get the seat and he should NOT get it... But, non the less, he will...

    I personally can not look at anyone who forces themselves on people in the way he has... That is a sign that he does not have the interest of the people at heart, only his self and his own gain...

    Typical politician...

    January 9, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  11. Matt

    Simple. Get the Illinois legislature to schedule a special election ASAP. Burris is gone as soon as someone is elected. Read the decision.

    January 9, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  12. Amius

    I hope the Senate has the guts to decline to seat him. He was appointed by a crook. The Senate should force his hand further. They have the authority to deny him the seat. They should exercise it and let the U.S. Supreme court hear the case if Burris wants to take it there. The whole thing is a farce!

    January 9, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  13. Robin

    I admire the Senate Democrats for trying to stall the seating Burris for as long as possible, but they might not have a choice If Burris challenges them in court.

    January 9, 2009 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  14. boered1

    I say DO THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL DUTY, THE ILLINOIS GOVERNOR AND SUPREME COURT HAVE ACCEPTED HIS APPOINTMENT, he meets the requirements of law for the seat. Stop ditheing and grandstanding and do your job seat the man.
    period
    no discussion required we are a country of laws this political crap is the problem and for all you people who think you can be "tainted" because you know someone or worked with someone or heard that someone might be a crimminal I say PLEASE STOP VOTING AND BREEDING we have too many idiots already!

    idiots

    January 9, 2009 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  15. Ellie

    WHAT the heck is all the RUSH to seat this guy? WHY? I mean is there a fire sale somewhere? Everyone needs to SLOW their roll. Let's take this slow and make sure all the dots are crossed and we don't miss anything that should NOT be missed. Bottom line.

    Jesus, what's the rush. AND...

    Rolland Burris would NEVER have been APPOINTED or ELECTED for this seat any other time. He was NOT even Blagovegich's FIRST choice. Burris is an opportunist and is trying to FORCE a quick seating. Coming from a man that NEVER was elected by the people of Chicago in the past to a Senate Seat!!! Hummmm, WHY is that??

    Bottom line.

    January 9, 2009 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  16. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    Just seat the man and get on with the serious work of the people. This is just a sideshow.

    January 9, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  17. james

    Powell could have made a great President. I still Love him of his work in this great nation!

    January 9, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  18. Texas Teacher

    If there is anyway to keep from seating Burris, I think they should. For the love of God, the man was appointed by a man who wanted to sell the seat! Burris contributed 20,000 dollars to the man's... what... campaign! Sounds like a bought and paid for seat to me! 😦

    January 9, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  19. Pat J

    Hey, Harry - let it go - seat the guy, already - the world won't end. Don't you have bigger things to do (guess NOT - as usual) - like - do an investigation on the "Mac" mortgage guys (including Dodd and Franke), who drove us into this sinking home mortgage pit !!!!!!

    January 9, 2009 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  20. Tad Armstrong

    Our own Senator Durbin violating the Constitution he is sworn to uphold. I could care less about Burris or Blago, but the Constitution is the Supreme law of the land. Durbin is violating it. It's almost laughable. A Democrat violating the Constitution to deny a fellow Democrat he says he respects his rightful seat in the Senate. That is stuff novels are made of.

    January 9, 2009 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  21. LYNETTE IN CA

    What is taking this so long?? Blago should be out and so should Burris. He is connected to Blago and he said at the hearing yesterday, but his involvement w/Blago's lobbyist Lou Monk. Also, that Burris' partner tried to get Blago's wife a position on a Board. Open mouth, insert foot.

    January 9, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  22. Chicago Red

    You guys shut Burrus out because it was not signed by Ill Secretary of State Jesse White.... the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled Roland Burris doesn’t need the secretary of state’s signature to make his appointment official now you say Senate rules still require it — and congressional leaders don’t see a way to seat him without it.
    — Reid what you need to do is go to the House and take that retard Nancy and Durbin with you ......

    January 9, 2009 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  23. Juan Grain

    isn't a burris a thing that gets under your skin and irritates?

    January 9, 2009 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  24. Chicago Red

    You guys shut Burrus out because it was not signed by Ill Secretary of State Jesse White.... the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled Roland Burris doesn’t need the secretary of state’s signature to make his appointment official now you say Senate rules still require it — and congressional leaders don’t see a way to seat him without it.
    — Reid what you need to do is go to the House and take that retard Nancy and Durbin with you ......

    January 9, 2009 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  25. Larry

    Typical Democrats--LAWS?? They were just made to be broken.We don't need no stinken laws.

    January 9, 2009 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
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