January 6th, 2009
07:20 PM ET
12 years ago

Burris' unpunched ticket to replace Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/06/art.burriscap0106.gi.jpg caption="Roland Burris held spoke briefly in the shadow of the Capitol after being informed that his appointment certificate was invalid under Senate Rules."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Roland Burris was turned away from the Senate floor Tuesday as he sought to be sworn-in as the junior senator from Illinois, because the Secretary of the Senate said his certificate was not valid.

Why is the certificate not valid?

Secretary of the Senate Nancy Erickson said that since it did not have the Illinois state seal or the Illinois Secretary of State's signature it did "not comply" with Senate rules, in a statement she released after meeting with Burris Tuesday morning.

The certificate was presented to Erickson on Monday by Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's chief of staff, and she retained the original copy.

Senate Democratic leaders oppose Burris' appointment to serve the remaining two years of President-elect Barack Obama's Senate term because they say Blagojevich, who is being investigated for allegedly trying to sell Obama's seat, should not be choosing the next senator.

Still, Blagojevich signed the paperwork and sent Burris to Washington. Burris meets with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, and Senate Majority Leader Richard Durbin, D-Illinois, Wednesday to discuss the matter.

Click here to see Burris' Certificate of Appointment to the Senate

Filed under: Roland Burris • Senate
soundoff (71 Responses)
  1. OIF Vet

    Come on Burris, this isn't Chicago. The rest of the country, except maybe New Orleans, is a constitutional-republic that runs on the democratic system of government. Go back to your pal Blogovich and tell him it's a no-go for the senate. Ask him if you can have his governors job when he goes to prison for high corruption, which ought to be pretty soon.

    January 6, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  2. mark l holland

    He needs to be seated. So long as the Governor has not been removed from office he is still Governor and has all rights being governor.

    January 6, 2009 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  3. Greg Hodges

    The more I see of American politics; the more I thank God for being born in Canada. We ain`t perfect either (far from it) but the circus has more order to it than some of the characters in the U.S. politics. Burris may have done nothing wrong; and may indeed be getting into the Senate through the back door; but would a man of integrity want to be appointed by a lunatic like Blagojevich? I think not!!!

    January 6, 2009 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  4. Barbara - Atlanta

    Burris need not to take this appointment...something's not right. Blago's playing everbody. Why won't Burris do what Danny Davis did and that was to decline. Is he that desperate?

    Can't everybody see what Blago's doing?

    January 6, 2009 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  5. Virginia for Lovers!

    He should be seated HE has done nothing wrong. Obviously Blago would not have try to seat him if he was corrupted or unfit in any way. He should not be punished or prejudged for the Gov's ordeal.

    January 6, 2009 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  6. BJ

    Blago and Burris sitting in a tree T-r-i-p-p-i-n-g!!

    January 6, 2009 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  7. Keep on Pushing

    SEAT HIM....and tell Bobby and Jessie Jr to move on with that Race Sh_T

    January 6, 2009 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  8. Larry in Houston

    Texas Teacher, you are SO Right ! Can you imagine trying to have some of these idiots that are making some of these comments on here in a class ??? You would have to get a Tutor for some of them.
    and then, they would still have trouble learning anything !!

    Larry C.
    Houston Texas

    January 6, 2009 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  9. Reality

    Our great and fearless leader, who demanded censorship during the campaign, is not even in office yet and his cronies are already shutting down democracy. Burris was legally appointed by the duly elected governor of Illinois who is supposed to be innocent until proven guilty. The crime he allegedly committed? Not doing what Obama told him to do.

    The notion of a free and impartial American press is already mocked the world over after observing the bias during the primaries and campaign. Meanwhile, the democrats are planning on creating 1 trillion worth of government bloat. The contracts are already promised to major Obama contributors.

    You will work for the government, with the government, or it is straight off to the gulag, comrade.

    January 6, 2009 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  10. Simmy

    I might also interject that most of those calling for a "special election" are Republicans. All of a sudden, they are the 'righteous ones,' pretending that Larry Craig (in the restrooms playing tappy toes), Coleman (trying to reinvent Bush), and Ted Stevens (almost had to be swept back to Alaska) don't belong to them.

    To Fed up with Alaska:

    Please tell Sis Sarah I said hi, and thanks.

    January 6, 2009 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  11. tim

    Seems like anybody that aligns themselves with Obama goes down
    in flames–start with the good Reverend-career over, Rezko-federal
    prison, The Gov. to be indicted, Ted Kennedy–brain surgery, John
    Edwards–career over, Gov. Richardson–probably indicted and poiltical
    career basically , Emanuel–investigation awaits, and now the
    whole Dem. party looking like a loony bin with Reid and Burris.
    People will start avoiding Obama if just to save their careers.

    January 6, 2009 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  12. Ruth WuWong

    With the financial crisis and all the other big problems going on that our new leaders need to deal with, I can not believe Blagojevich was able to use Burris to elevate a State corruption issue to the national level, and along the way make our nation an entertaining topic for the world to talk about. Even worse, to drag the race issue into the whole fiasco really puts a shadow over the exciting historic change we are about to witness on 1/20/2009. Burris probably didn’t realize that his going to DC could become a distraction to our new leaders’ work. I wonder whether Blagojevich knows what he has done is causing damage to our beloved nation.

    January 6, 2009 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  13. Nick

    I think the Democrats are just making this whole thing more embarassing than it already is. Just seat the guy!

    January 6, 2009 11:33 pm at 11:33 pm |
  14. lvironpigs

    Wow. What a real circus this whole thing is becoming, say?

    January 6, 2009 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  15. chris@stl

    Go home Mr. Burrris if yu have any dignity left.

    January 6, 2009 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  16. tk in IL

    bbillinois, I thought I heard the names of his (Burris's kids) on the CBSChicago news the other day, and I thought I must have been mistaken, but now I see indeed he did name them Roland and Rolanda.....geez. I know there's not many politicians with an original thought in their brain but that is just plain egotistical.

    This circus is such an embarrassment to those of us that live in IL and most of you are only seeing the tip of the very dirty IL political iceberg.

    Burris is a shameful man playing the race card the way he and his cronies are doing and they wasted a moment not to do so, starting immediately with the original nomination press announcement made by Blagojevich. Not only does he not show enough integrity and honor to be seated, his lack of competence is stunning.

    January 6, 2009 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  17. April

    Okay, what did this Blagojevich guy did? He was just talking on the phone, he did not receive any gift and no one saw any money change hands. Yet, we are apt to condemn the guy just because he has a big mouth. Did he commit a high treason? Of course not. But the problem here is that Obama (SLICK WILLY) thinks everyone that call him name should be hanged. Slick Willy had bent so many rules and yet all of America is patting him on the back. What rule you may ask? Well, first of all, HE WAS NOT BORN IN AMERICA AND YET YOU LET HIM HAVE THE PRESIDENCY. NOW, THAT IS A HIGH TREASON IF YOU ASK SOME OF US WITH BRAINS. Blagojevich is innocent until proven guilty because THAT IS THE AMERICAN WAY. HE IS A MAN THAT STANDS HIS GROUND AND NOT BE SHAKEN OR MOVED. THAT IS A GENUINE CHARACTER OF A MAN. I DO NOT KNOW THIS GUY BUT I SEE HE CAN STAND UP AGAINST THE BULLIES. BRAVO. NOW THAT IS A REAL MAN. As for Slick Willy, enjoy your honeymoon while you can, very soon, oratory will not help you because we need ACTION LIKE YESTERDAY. WE ARE GOING TO HOLD YOU TO EVERY CAMPAIGN PROMISES YOU MADE. REMEMBER THIS, YOU KOOL AID DRINKERS, NEVER KNOCK A MAN OR WOMAN WHEN HE OR SHE IS DOWN.

    January 6, 2009 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  18. Roger

    Harry Reid, who has a worse rating than President, is making a grevious mistake. Being from Nevada Harry is familmar with the game Black Jack but he is using a different '" Black Jack" with Mr. Burris.He is srong arming tactics are like the of use of the
    police "weapon" of the 1950's .Also this stipulation of Mr.Burris, if seated, he agrees not to run in 2010. Add to this all
    Democratsenators who would run in 2010 , 2012, 2014.- Also can some tell us why PE Ombama resigned so early? He could have made this cleanier by having a person ready at his resignation date.

    January 7, 2009 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  19. German,Irish American

    Innocent until proven guilty. Wheres the ACLU, Civil Liberties, Black Caucus? Sucks to be labeled a racist doesn't it Dems? Just be happy Fitzgerald made the investigation public before Obama and his corrupt associates had a chance to incriminate themselves. Your new transparent change party, has a governor from Illinois who has not officially been charged with any wrong doing, and has legally appointed a replacement for Obama's vacant Senate seat. It is begginning to look like the main reason he is being denied the seat by Democratic leaders, is because he is black. The scene today brought back images of George Wallace and his fellow Democrats blocking black children from school steps.

    January 7, 2009 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  20. tk in IL

    This circus is an embarrassment to the citizens of Il. Burris should be ashamed of himself acting the way he is. I have no respect for him any longer and his lack of competence is simply stunning.

    Burris don't go away mad.....just go away.........and take your buddies with you......

    January 7, 2009 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
  21. Michael

    Burris will be seated, eventually. Reid wants to avoid a total loss, so he's going to try to attach Burris' promise to retire in 2010 to the deal. However, Burris won't agree to this face-saving negotiating tactic. Reid will look bad. If I were Reid, I'd cut my losses. I'd admit that emotion got the better of me when I made my definitive statement to exclude any Blagojevich appointee. I now see the foolishness of my decision. I wish to walk back from it, seat Burris in the Senate, and move forward.

    January 7, 2009 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
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