February 18th, 2009
12:33 PM ET
6 years ago

Calls for Burris resignation intensify as new details emerge

U.S. Sen. Roland Burris leaves a news conference on Sunday in Chicago, Illinois.
U.S. Sen. Roland Burris leaves a news conference on Sunday in Chicago, Illinois.

(CNN) - The Washington Post added its voice Wednesday to a growing chorus of demands for the resignation of Sen. Roland Burris two days after he detailed conversations with impeached Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's brother that he failed to mention under oath.

Burris, appointed by a scandal-wracked Blagojevich to fill President Obama's vacant Senate seat, told reporters Monday night in Peoria, Illinois, that he had three conversations with the governor's brother, Robert Blagojevich.

In them, the Democratic senator said he discussed possibly raising money for the governor before ultimately declining to do so.

Burris said he had talked to some people about holding a fundraiser but told the governor's brother shortly after Obama's election that no one was willing to donate. In a third conversation, he finally said it would be inappropriate to raise money because he was interested in the Senate appointment.

"This latest revelation makes a mockery of his professions of no quid pro quo," the Post argued on its editorial page. "It is a violation of the public trust. The people of Illinois have suffered enough. Mr. Burris should resign."

The paper also said, "Mr. Burris's story has more twists than the Chicago El, and none of them good."

On Tuesday, the largest newspaper in Illinois also called for Burris to resign. In an editorial on its Web site, the Chicago Tribune said that "the benefit of the doubt had already been stretched thin" with Burris' explanations of his appointment, and that with his most recent comments, "[i]t finally snapped like a rubber band, popping him on that long Pinocchio nose of his."

Updated 12:33 p.m.

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Filed under: Roland Burris
soundoff (173 Responses)
  1. Dawn

    Let him resign and answer questions to lying under oath which is a Federal offense. Standing out in the rain complaining that he is the Junior Senator from Illinois. He needs to come clean and leave the Senate, they should have had an unschedule elections, whether or not it would be a Repulican or Democrat.

    February 18, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  2. Robert - Florida

    Burris should have never taken a tainted nomination. No one else should have either, which would have maybe put presson Blagojevich. Burris should step down on prinicple.

    February 18, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  3. P. Y.

    The bum should have never been put in office in the 1st place. He strong armed his way in office by using the " race card " .

    For once, and probably this time only, I agree with the Republicans.

    February 18, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  4. Kevin in Ohio

    Fascinating...the CNN article doesnt even mention that Burris, like Blago, is a DEMOCRAT. Had this been a Republican, the word "Republican" would have been splashed all through the article. Maybe we DO need the "fairness doctrine"...........

    February 18, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  5. Abel

    Here They Go Again, just leave the Man alone , for those parading themselves as purist are Devils in Disguise , Americans are more bothered about the economic challenges Which News paper? Please agin let the Man Be and go after him during his election and test his popularity.

    February 18, 2009 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  6. True Conservative

    How many of you remember me predicting the Democraps(tired of hearing the phrase repug....gonna start firing back) would do a hatchet job on Burris to get their choice (Valerie Jarrett) the Senate seat they were trying to buy from Blago

    2010
    Chris Dodd....out
    Harry Reid......out
    Nancy Pelosi....not speaker

    February 18, 2009 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  7. A little sad

    Burris may have, at least in his own mind, done nothing wrong.

    However, this was a perfrect storm waiting to happen. He will be polically questionable and therefore ineffective.

    Like Barry Bonds, any achievement he could possibly make in the Senate will have an asterisk after it.

    I hope Mr. Burris has the grace to resign.

    February 18, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  8. Tesap:Savannah, GA

    He should never have accepted the position in the first place. He will be removed and the saga will continue. Just dumb on his part!

    February 18, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  9. witch

    Sen Burrris I am from Il and I think you need to resign as do a lot of others. how will you help our state now when you have lost our trust? Please resign this is the will of the people.

    February 18, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  10. JIM WHITTAKER, Hemet, CA

    Naw, keep this fool around, he's funnier than anything else that's on
    television these days. SNL couldn't even make this stuff up.

    Haven't seen anything this funny since Abbott and Costello's "Who's
    on First" routine!

    Maybe him and Blago could co-host their own TV show? Couldn't
    be any worse than the pathetic dreck on MSNBC...

    February 18, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  11. obambi

    Forget about Burris–he is politically done–the Dems only kept him around for the big "stimulus vote". Anyone who thinks they did not know all this before they let him stay in is still drinking the Obama koolaid. They got his vote and used him–now he will be gone.

    February 18, 2009 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  12. Dave, DE

    Sen Burris, you are the perfect example of the victim of the dark side ambition. You knew that you were deceiving people when you were testifying. As someone who thinks to one self as a "trailblazer", you should do the honorable thing, and say I made a mistake, and resign. Otherwise you will be known as something different than "trailblazer"

    February 18, 2009 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  13. AEK

    Although I was originally sympathetic to Mr. Burris' cause, believing him to be an honorable man thrust into the middle of a very untenable situation, the recent revelations on his part that he was, in fact, having communications with Blagojevich's "people" has deeply distressed me. Like many others, I'm sure, feeling betrayed by the confidence I had in him. Now is the time to do the real honorable thing and resign. That will be a very tough decision on his part. He has now tasted the "fruit" of the Washington, D.C. tree, and as a US Senator to boot. I do not envy him the repercussions of his decision either way.

    February 18, 2009 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  14. jaye

    Did Burris break any laws?
    If not, then get over it and move on.

    February 18, 2009 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  15. rena

    Get out Burris, you crook. We are so sick of these lying politicians. They need to run them all thru a polygram test. We would find out a lot about those bunch of hunkered down lying wisles. I say they all need to go, put the average american citizen, who is living the everyday life in those seats. You will then see a big difference. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to balance a checkbook. We just need to stop spending what we don't have, bottom line. When these fools figure that out; then and only then we will have some progress and stability back into the economy.

    February 18, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  16. bill

    I didnt want him there in the first place. This man should be removed immediately..

    February 18, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  17. Bruce, Chicago

    I'm ashamed to list my city. Please resign, there is nothing you can do to talk yourself out of this.

    February 18, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  18. Ed

    This is why you don't let accused persons to appoint anyone. Have we not learned anything through the coarse of history. We have to be the most stupid society in the world to believe anything a politicians, lawyers, bankers, and wall street.

    You know when they are lying when they open their mouths... Sorry to be so cynical... I live in the real world.

    February 18, 2009 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  19. Beverly, NYC

    Couldn't fund raise but got the position anyway. Come on Burris, who doyou think you're kidding? Come clean, someone either wrote a check or an envelope of cash was delivered to Blago or his brother.

    February 18, 2009 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  20. TyWebb

    B-B-B-B-B-R-R-R-R-Ris....It's getting cold out there, eh?

    February 18, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  21. Rick

    Lincoln has rolled over in his grave and turned his back on Illinois because of crooked politics and Burris. Maybe its time for Obama to call for Burris to resign, but he wont, because Burris is one of his Dem buddies.

    February 18, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  22. 1/20/13

    Another fine Chicago Political Figure......Do any of you know any, crroked Chicago Politicians. Oh wait I can think of another one, he occupies the White House

    February 18, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  23. Gregory H. Brooklyn, New York

    Former President Herbert Hoover says it best, "When there is a lack of honor in government, the morals of the whole people are poisoned". We as a people can and must do better. The stench of the former Governor lingers...Mr. Burris, come clean, then go.

    February 18, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  24. NC=Blue in 2008

    TO: jaye @ February 18th, 2009 10:04 am ET - If he lied or intentionally misled, they he perjured himself. That is unlawful.

    I think Burris should resign to remove the cloud of suspicion and to make it easier for another democrat to win the seat in two more years. He hasn't been able to win an election in years.

    February 18, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  25. John, Brooklyn, NY

    Harry Reid was RIGHT! He never should have been seated in the Senate in the first place.

    Shame on CNN's Roland Martin and others who played the race card to pressure Reid into an unwise decision.

    February 18, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
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