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This just in… Burris heads to IL Supreme Court *** House posts elections bill, cancels hearing ***

Wednesday, Dec 31, 2008

* 8:01 pm - Not unexpected. Secretary of State Jesse White refused to certify Roland Burris’ appointment, so he’s running to the courts…

U.S. Senate appointee Roland Burris has asked [the Illinois Supreme Court] to force Secretary of State Jesse White to certify his appointment to Barack Obama’s old Senate seat. […]

It’s the start of legal wrangling over the seat that embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich filled by naming Burris.
The move comes after White rejected Blagojevich’s proclamation naming Burris to the Senate.

More

“There is a great and urgent interest of the people of the state of Illinois in being fully represented before the United States Senate,” the Burris petition said.

Burris maintained state law “imposes an unconditional obligation on the secretary of state” to perform “merely a ministerial” role that does not leave “any discretion whatsoever” to block or impede the action.

* You can view Burris’ filing by clicking here. The case is being handled by Burris’ firm, which does a bunch of bond business.

* But whatever happens with the Supremes, here’s something very important to remember

…Eric Ueland, a parliamentary and legal expert on the Senate, said yesterday that precedent has allowed the Senate to conduct investigations of troubling elections. This would make the matter not “justiciable,” Ueland said, keeping courts out of the dispute because the Senate has proper jurisdiction.

Forget all the bloviating about whether the Senate does or does not have jurisdiction here. A very strong case can be made by the Senate.

* From Politico we have another Senate tactic

Senate officials tell Politico that if presented with the appointment, they are likely to give the Rules Committee 90 days to determine the propriety of the appointment by looking into such issues as whether Blagojevich received anything in return for it.

“A motion to refer credentials to the committee has the effect of delaying seating,” a Senate Democratic aide said. “The motion is debatable and amendable.”

Another official explained: “That buys us 90 days.”

That should be enough so the senators won’t have to act to prevent Burris from joining the chamber. Blagojevich’s defiance inflamed Illinois legislators, speeding up the impeachment process.

Roland Burris is about to hit a major brick wall.

Like I said, forget all the bloviating. The Senate has significant power here.

* Meanwhile, I’m not completely sure what is going on here yet

A bill to hold a special election to fill President-elect Barack Obama’s Senate seat may be getting another life in Springfield.

The measure, which had been shelved by House Speaker Michael Madigan, on Wednesday was quietly posted for a committee hearing next Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 7. […]

If a special-election bill were to pass, it could effectively nullify the appointment, or restrict it to the period until a special election could be held.

First of all, any attempt to nullify the appointment could be met with a veto. Moot point.

And even if it did become law, Burris could argue in court that it’s an ex post facto attempt to nullify his appointment.

What a mess.

Also, the only bill posted for the House Elections & Campaign Reform Committee is SB761. The measure, sponsored by Rep. John Fritchey (D-Chicago) is not a special elections bill. The underlying bill is a vehicle, and the Senate amendment deals with constitutional amendment balloting.

The House could add a special election amendment to it. I couldn’t reach Fritchey, but it’s New Year’s Eve, so I kinda figured I wouldn’t get ahold of him.

* Also, the committee was canceled after the Crain’s article appeared. Nothing will happen now.

Here’s the original statement from House Speaker Madigan’s spokesman about the bill postings for next week…

Several Illinois House committees are scheduled for Wednesday afternoon to accommodate members with unfinished business in the current GA in the event the full House returns to Springfield.

The decision to return will be determined following the Monday court hearing on the release of the tapes in the Governor’s criminal case

Should the House not return, the committees will be rescheduled for the days already set for the following week.

The other committees weren’t canceled, just Elections. Hmmm.

The ILGOP responds…

“Once again Blagojevich Democrats failed the people of Illinois.

“It appears Rod Blagojevich’s campaign co-chairman Mike Madigan would rather allow this senate appointment to stand instead of doing what’s right and giving the voters what they want.

“Blagojevich Democrats could have solved this problem 15 days ago by passing a special election, instead they refused to strip the Governor of his appointment powers and contributed to yet another constitutional crisis for Illinois.”

* Other stuff…

* Why Is the Governor’s Criminal Defense Lawyer Making Political Overtures?

- Posted by Rich Miller        


114 Comments
  1. - Rep. John Fritchey - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:14 pm:

    Here I am Rich, and less than a 30 minute drive from you no less :)


  2. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:24 pm:

    OK, back to the mojitos.

    Fritchey, if you see this, my phone is messed up. Texting is the best way to reach me. Must be the salt air.


  3. - Bill - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:24 pm:

    Happy New Year, Rich and John!
    It is a little chilly here tonight. They just turned on the propane heater at the beachside bar.


  4. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:28 pm:

    Yeah, I’m thinking of wearing the long-sleeve Hawaiian shirt with the khaki shorts.

    lol

    Happy new year to all!!!


  5. - Maggie - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:33 pm:

    All I’ve heard today from the media is Jesse’s not needed to sign off. It’s only a technicality. Everything Blogo did was legal. Then why bother going to the Illinois SC ?


  6. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:36 pm:

    Maggie, because the bloviators didn’t stop to think that the Senate could use that fact as just another reason to delay seating Burris.

    Don’t believe everything you hear. Burris is in for big trouble.


  7. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:37 pm:

    And that, my friends, is my final post of the evening.

    Unless, God forbid, something else happens tonight.


  8. - Cheswick - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:39 pm:

    The Court put the Burris documents on the same page as the Lisa Madigan and Bambenek documents.

    Not a sign; just convenience I’m sure.

    I’m putting on my big winter coat and going out. Happy New Year everybody.


  9. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:44 pm:

    Fight the battle on as many fronts as possible, and hope you win on at least one, and hope you can parlay that into something more.


  10. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 8:45 pm:

    Hey, where are all you guys that its warm and stuff? Its pretty darn cold here in central Illinois.


  11. - Bubs - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 9:12 pm:

    Harry Reid’s mouth has gotten the Senate into a no-win situation. Either they look weak by acceding to this, or they throw out the only Black member. Fun choice!

    Stalling for impeachment is their best answer for now, but . . .

    Can Governor Quinn lawfully revoke the Burris nomination, once Governor Blagojevich has sent it to the Senate? Can Blagojevich lawfully send in the nomination without Jesse White’s certification?

    Who the heck knows? Holy Terra Incognita, Batman!

    Rest assured that a judicial train wreck is now on the way. Those poor Justices! I hope they have plenty of aspirin.


  12. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 9:18 pm:

    Hey, I’m the one with the sweetheart government pension. Why don’t I have a place in Florida, or in the Keys, or Arizona or Palm Springs? In fact, why don’t I have a summer place in Michigan, or Lake Geneva or somewhere? Something is very wrong here.


  13. - Rep. John Fritchey - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 10:09 pm:

    Rich,

    I’ve got bigger issues than phone problems. There’s sand on the lime wedges and we’re running out of salt :)


  14. - Justice - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 11:20 pm:

    All the very best to everyone in 2009. Perhaps there will be fair winds to fill the sails of our ship of state and move us in a positive direction. Hats off to you and your team Rich. You are one of a kind and generously share your talent. For that, we are grateful!


  15. - Vote Quimby! - Wednesday, Dec 31, 08 @ 11:49 pm:

    ==throw out the only Black member==

    Ummm….don’t you have to BE in before you get thrown out? Happy New Year!


  16. - Vote Quimby! - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 12:00 am:

    Welcome 2009…the Year of Rod


  17. - Pot calling kettle - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:48 am:

    1st post of the New Year!

    If the SOS’s role is “ministerial”, and a “must sign,” why bother? There must be a reason for requiring his sign off. If it is a certification that the appointment is legit, then, in this case at least, the lack of a sign off might be significant.

    On the other hand, if Jesse has signed onto other official actions of the Gov since his arrest, then his refusal in this case holds little water.

    Happy New Year! May this one see Illinois in better shape than the last one.


  18. - Blago Sphere - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:23 am:

    Well I just rolled in; and decided to check my ahem; “brokerage account” to see how some of my investments closed out the year. After hearing about the Hawaiian shirts and swim trunks at the beach side bar on Tuesday, I couldn’t help but make a nice sized capital investment in “Rich’s Dream”.

    So how’s this for a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    HAWTHORNE
    2nd Race

    WIN PLACE SHOW
    1A Rich’s Dream 15.40 5.80 4.00

    I’ll take it!

    P.S. If Burris’s attorney is a product of the Chicago Public Schools, then we may need to exercise the recall provision for Arne Duncan.

    For God’s sake did they buy a computer with no spell check function? This is going to the Supreme Court for crying out loud. What an embarrassment!

    Time for bed.

    HAPPY NEW YEAR


  19. Pingback Politics: Burris is a hack | Peoria Pundit - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:04 am:

    […] Zorn still thinks that Burris will eventually end up getting a seat in the U.S. Senate. Rich Miller, who is almost never wrong about these sorts of things, says different. He thinks with Secretary of State Jesse White and the United States Senate throwing up too many roadblocks, Burris will never be seated. […]


  20. - this voter will remember - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:38 am:

    Why, why, why is Burris going ahead with this fiasco? He is making a bigger spectacle of Illinois than Blagojevich has. Maybe that is Blagojevich’s plan - take the heat off him by making someone else look even stupider.


  21. - Bill Baar - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:53 am:

    Easy..Burris is doing it because he wants to be Senator… I’m with Zorn, I think he’ll be seated… Politico says the US Senate is going to launch their own investigation to try and stall things 90 days…until a Gov Quinn can get installed and appoint an up-and-comer like Dan Seals instead…

    I’m with Zorn here. Burris will get seated because I think that’s going to be the smartest thing for Dems to do…if they stop and think a bit.


  22. - Bookworm - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:20 am:

    Despite all the pledges by Harry Reid, Jesse White and others not to accept any appointment Blago made, I think legally they ought to accept that they were outmaneuvered, and allow Burris to be seated. Blago is still governor, after all, and by law still has the authority to make the appointment.

    Reid and company really had no choice but to say, immediately after the arrest, that they wouldn’t accept any appointment Blago made. To have said otherwise would only have encouraged Blago to go on doing what he had been doing.

    To borrow Cindi Canary’s analogy, it would have been like saying “Yes, we know you’ve just been charged with serial arson, but you are, after all, innocent until proven guilty, so you can keep your gasoline can and matches for now.”

    Unfortunately, the GA failed to back that pledge up with concrete action. They did not pass a special election bill, which Blago himself apparently would have signed. Nor did they attempt to craft any kind of legislation stripping him of his authority to make the appointment. Blago is absolutely right in saying they dropped the ball. The GA, and for that matter Obama himself, has known for years what a snake Blago is, so now they can’t complain about getting bitten.


  23. - 32nd Ward Roscoe Village - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:40 am:

    Who are Lawrence A. Perlman and John Ruff?


  24. - 32nd Ward Roscoe Village - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:48 am:

    RRB would never would have signed the special election bill–he says now that he would have supported it, but there is no way he would have kowtowed to the GA. Remember, he only acts is his self-interest, not in the interests of the citizens of the State of Illinois. Narcissus reborn.


  25. - observer - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:02 am:

    Happy New Year. Curious, what’s the opinion of how all of this has affected Emil Jones? Is he now outta the picture post retirement? At DHS, we’re all wondering what kind of changes we might see and when.


  26. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:03 am:

    I find Burris’ petition for mandamus a little curious in that he doesn’t claim a demonstrable injury that’s in need of relief.

    His petition claims that under state law and the U.S. constitution, his appointment “is effective immediately and there is no need for further confirmation by any other official from the State of Illinois” including Jesse White.

    The injury claimed is that the lack of certification “may cast doubt in the minds of the public as to the legitimacy of Mr. Burris’ appointment.”

    It may or may not. Who can tell? Where’s the demonstrated injury? If, as he claims, he’s the Senator with or without the certification, there is none. That could be an out for the Supremes, who are political animals, if they want to avoid this mess.

    Of course, the petition is silent on his real concern, which is the certification requirement in the Rules of the Senate. That must be more important than some have led us to believe, although the petition studiously avoids saying so.

    The lack of certification is certainly grounds to question the legitimacy of the appointment and kick the matter into Rules, where they can run out the clock on this nonsense.

    Well done, Jesse.


  27. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:05 am:

    Happy New Year everyone, it’s been a stone-cold groove. Rich, you’re the hardest working man in show business.


  28. - phocion - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:07 am:

    Happy New Year!

    You know, maybe it’s my extreme hangover talking, but there’s something about this special election talk that I haven’t seen discussed. Why on earth does ANYONE believe Blagojevich would have signed off on a special election bill? I mean, please. Commenters and the media are actually taking this sociopathic Governor at his word that he would have actually agreed with a special election. Please! The GA didn’t send him a bill for a variety of reasons, I’m sure. Not least of which is the certainty that this meglomaniac would never, never sign a bill that would have taking his bleeping golden thing away for him. People, please - don’t kick Madigan and the Illinois legislature for not forwarding this bill to the current Governor.

    Ok, now back to the hangover. Um…anybody know of a good cure?


  29. - DuPage Dave - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:08 am:

    Way too many talking heads on TV are parroting the line that the Illinois legislature messed up somehow in not passing a special election bill. I agree with 32nd Ward that Blago would not have signed the bill, and at least would have sat on it for the maximum time before vetoing it. During that time, he would be free to appoint Burris or anyone else.

    So the G.A., while they might have acted, did not have the power to prevent an appointment by Blago. Even passing the special election bill with a veto-proof majority in each house would not have stopped Blago from sitting on the bill and appointing a Senator before the clock ran out (is it 60 days??).

    The G.A. in both houses deserve criticism for a number of actions and inactions the last few years. But please, let’s not criticize them for not taking an action that would have had no effect on Blagojevich.


  30. - Justice - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:08 am:

    Rich, looking forward to your award winning coverage of Illinois politics in 2009!! Don’t let up!!


  31. - phocion - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:10 am:

    Oops…I see 32nd Ward had the same thought. Yeah, Narcissus indeed.


  32. - Bill Baar - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:17 am:

    …that Blago would not have signed the bill…

    That we’ll never know is what rankles.


  33. - Esteban - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:24 am:

    Removing Blago from office would NOT, I don’t
    believe, nullify Burris’s appointment-he would
    still be the senator-designate. Perhaps Mr.
    Fritchey or someone else could address this point.


  34. - zatoichi - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:30 am:

    When you have to deal with multiple problems, you often have to decide which things cost the most or are most inportant for the long haul. No one wins every debate or contest. The Burris issue seems like a side issue that simply does not matter in the long run. Yeah, state and fed legislative people can keep bloviating,(Hey kids, what’s Pee Wee’s word of the week: bloviating!) for a news spot supporting the pro-Blago, anti-Blago, Constitution, or whatever camp you prefer. Is it worth the effort to stop the Burris choice? Whether it is interpreted as a slap or sincerity is almost irrelevent. Is Burris doing this as an IOU repayment or a real attempt to resolve issues? Who knows. He has to work hard to not appear more foolish than this entire episode is already looking. If Fitzgerald needs 3 more months to get the rest of his case together because there is so much stuff, the Burris issue will be minor material in the long run. Based on Obama’s run for the Presidentcy, Illinois has only had one actual senator doing serious time in DC in the last two years. Keep the focus on the impeachment and the federal charges. With new Senate leadership, if the GA cannot cooperate to figuratively or literally cut Rod out out of the picture, then this is all a bloviating waste of time.


  35. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:36 am:

    –Ok, now back to the hangover. Um…anybody know of a good cure?–

    Switch between football and westerns (currently Iowa vs. South Carolina and “A Fistful of Dollars”) plus cold pizza followed by a Bloody Mary (chock full of restorative vitamins). Don’t fight the nap impulse.


  36. - p - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:52 am:

    I hate all of you


  37. - p - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:54 am:

    Sorry, that was in response to all the beachside talk…


  38. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:15 am:

    Regarding the hangover cure question = The trick is to Not stop drinking! Just pretend you are Rich on vacation in eighty degree weather.


  39. - ZC - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:20 am:

    The Chicago Tribune had a good review of the most likely Democratic strategy this morning.

    1. Stall Burris. Delay. Investigate. And impeach Blago, fast.

    2. Let Quinn make another appointment.

    3. The U.S. Senate will then be in the position of having to choose between two contesting nominees, never having formally accepted Burris. If the Senate then chose not-Burris, as part of its regular function to choose between two nominees, I don’t think _Powell v. McCormick_ would apply.

    4. Most important, the Senate cannot allow Burris to be seated, or formally refuse to seat him, thus provoking a federal court challenge. If Burris is accepted or gets the federal courts to order him in, then it probably would take a two-thirds vote to expel him. And the Senate Repubs aren’t going to put their votes on that, not unless the IL Dems first pass and schedule a special election that Mark Kirk might win.


  40. - DuPage Dave - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:25 am:

    Mark Kirk can’t win a statewide election in Illinois. Period. The state Repubs have no gas in the tank.


  41. - ZC - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:29 am:

    DuPage Dave,

    I agree it’s _unlikely_, but holy cow, after the last month’s events? I don’t think anyone can be sure. Doesn’t it depend on who the Dems put up against him? Say it’s Schakowsky vs. Kirk. I like Schakowsky, but you’re saying there’s no way Kirk could win that statewide?


  42. - the Other Anonymous - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:35 am:

    A couple of procedural points:

    1) The Ill. Supreme Court may exercise original jurisdiction in a mandamus action; but it can also decline, and send the matter to a trial court and let it work its way up the appelate ladder. Wanna bet what they will do?

    2) An order of the Ill. Supreme Court forcing Jesse White to certify will not deprive the US Senate from exercising its own right to pass on the qualifications of a senator-designate.

    I think what’s going on in DC is that Reid thinks that if he makes it hard enough and embarassing enough, Blagojevich and/or Burris will withdraw. Durbin should tell him otherwise; both these guys live in their own little world where the only thing that matters is ego.


  43. - Bookworm - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:48 am:

    Oh, you’re right. If we couldn’t Blago (or, more precisely, his attorneys) when they said he wouldn’t make the Senate appointment, then how can we believe him when he said he would have signed a special election bill? Although didn’t Rich himself, or one of his sources, speculate that Blago would indeed have signed the bill just to keep Pat Quinn from making the Senate appointment?


  44. - Bookworm - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:49 am:

    I meant to say “If we couldn’t BELIEVE Blago (or more precisely, his attorneys)…


  45. - Bookworm - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 11:55 am:

    Whatever happens in the next month or two, the GA had better change the law to provide for special elections in the event of any FUTURE Senate vacancy. At least we can salvage that much out of this fiasco.

    I cannot help but wonder what would be happening right now if con-con had passed…


  46. - Little Egypt - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 12:24 pm:

    Fritchey won’t be available today. He’s looking for a dentist to do restorative work after grinding his teeth down to nubs because of the sand in the lime slices. After he leaves the dentist, he’s stopping by the grocery store for some salt to rim the glasses. Enjoy your vaca Fritchey ’cause Monday morning’s a comin’ fast.


  47. - Little Egypt - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 12:29 pm:

    Bookworm, IF con-con had passed, you would see the members moving about as fast as the Legislative Committee on Impeachment (at pathetically slow speed).

    My wish for 2009 is that the Legislative Committee stop catering to Gensen, get their job done this next week and get this impeachment show moving down the road. There’s no reason you have to “hold court” for one day and take the rest of the week off. When Madigan said the Committee would be in session every day except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day, there was one giant guffaw heard from the citizens of the entire State of Illinois. Come on kids, get your job done and help restore some integrity to Illinois politics. The Committee members, of all people, should be most anxious to do this - and that includes you Rep. Fritchey.


  48. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 12:55 pm:

    LE, I’m with you. Currie needs to knuckle down now and get this to the full House. Rod is plotting more mischief as we speak, I’m sure.

    Also, have I missed any mention of the Loop School mystery-million in the impeachment hearings?

    The Winter Classic at Wrigley is awesome. The pre-game ceremonies, “Oh Canada,” “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and flyover were inspiring, and will remind the world that not everything in Illinois is base and sordid.


  49. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:25 pm:

    People, take a breath. There is no sense in sending an impeachment to the senate while Emil Jones is in charge.

    Period.

    You should know this. If not, why not? And if u do, why bother carping?

    Also, most committee work takes place behind the scenes. Meetings are usually for show. No meeting does NOT mean no work. Just the opposite.

    So, relax and enjoy the holiday.


  50. - Bookworm - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:31 pm:

    You said it Rich… every one of the committee members has staff who have had to work long hours helping them get ready.

    Not to mention most everyone who’s testified so far had people working long hours for THEM helping them get ready (Auditor General, JCAR, BGA, etc.) There hasn’t been much holiday time off for the folks at LIS and LRB who write and post all the action, I’m sure.


  51. - Correction - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:37 pm:

    Rich said — And even if it did become law, Burris could argue in court that it’s an ex post facto attempt to nullify his appointment. —

    You’re wrong. The General Assembly could pass a bill that calls for a special election and Burris can’t do anything about it if it becomes law. The 17th Amd gives the General Assembly authority to permit the “executive” to make a temporary appointment until an election. State law gives the Governor power to make a temporary appointment until an election. Under CURRENT LAW, The General Assembly can authorize a special election, and if the Governor signs it (and he’s said he would) then Burris has the appointment until the special election. Even if the General Assembly strips the Governor of his ability to make the appointment prior to the US Senate seating Burris, Burris can’t do jack. I doubt Blags would sign that bill.

    The point - a simple bill calling for a special election to fill the vacancy doesnt create a legal program.


  52. - MikeintheSuburbs - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:44 pm:

    You people must not have much of a life if you are up and blogging hangover free already.

    As I commented before, the practice of investigating and even refusing to seat Senators who were appointed prior to the adoption of the 17th amendment was not uncommon and the 17th says nothing that would take away that authority in the case of an appointment. Also, the Constitutional provision that the Congress may judge the “elections and returns” is in somewhat in conflict with the original provision that senators are appointed by the states, not elected, unless that refers to elections and returns by state legislatures. This could arguably be applied to an appointment by a Governor, but it’s a bit of a stretch.

    Then we have the spectacle of a Black man standing at the door of the Senate and being refused admittance by the all White body. Not a good visual.

    All this may be breathing new life into he special election idea, no matter how displeasing that may be to the Dems.


  53. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 1:57 pm:

    New York could defuse the race issue by simply appointing Al Sharpton to their vacancy. At least Rev.Al provides some comedy relief now and then.


  54. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:00 pm:

    I think the “black man at the senate door” will be played up by the media, but I’m not so sure this will be effective. Obama brings a new dynamic and approach to this, which older black politicos may still not understand. The GOPs who are pushing this line are either not getting it either, or are just trying to stir up trouble, or both.


  55. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:01 pm:

    There is not yet a vacancy in New York. Hillary’s not taking any chances. Who knows what Bill and her two oafish brothers have been doing on the international scene that could bite her in confirmation hearings?


  56. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:10 pm:

    Intriguing observation, Rich. The “old time” civil rights leaders are seemingly in a different dimension than the younger Obama focused followers. The conflict is usually low key but occasionally surfaces and is perplexing to the old timers.


  57. - True Observer - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:22 pm:

    The Secretary of State signature is a formality.

    This is no different than a corporate resolution signed by the President and Secretary.

    In the corporate setting the secretary is saying that it is the president’s signature.

    Everyone in the world knows it is Blago’s signature.

    The postion being filled is of an incumbent who resigned in the middle of his term.

    The only person who swears in new Senators is the VP.

    Burris is not getting good advice.

    He should present his certification to Cheney and be sworn in immediately. The Dems in the Senate and Reid have nothing to do with his being sworn in.

    He is not a member of the incoming class.


  58. - ZC - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 2:58 pm:

    For those who can’t get their fill: Akhil Reed Amar at Yale argues why the Senate can refuse to seat Burris, regardless of _Powell v. McCormack_: http://www.slate.com/id/2207754/.

    He may be right, on the merits, but who knows what this Supreme Court would decide.


  59. - wordslinger - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 3:11 pm:

    Obama provides all the cover the Senate needs for those who want to play the race card.

    Who, exactly, is supposed to be outraged by Burris not being seated?


  60. - DuPage Dave - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 3:34 pm:

    Wordslinger- I think so far only Bobby Rush will be outraged. But not that much, really…


  61. - Bubs - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 4:05 pm:

    ZC,

    After reading the Amar piece, I still can’t agree. The fact that these professors published in Slate Magazine only reinforces the suspicion that it contains a result-oriented analysis with more than a bit of political spice thrown in.

    These professors start from their own view that the Constitutional power of the Senate is plenary - that the Senate as a body can pretty much act to deny on the most subjective of opinions on the candidate’s path to the Senate doorway, and as the final authority. But in the Powell case, the Supreme Court interpreted the Constitution quite differently.

    The oft-stated argument to avoid Powell is that the Representative in that case was elected, not appointed, and therefore “the people’s choice.” But accepting that distinction forces the conclusion that there is somehow a differing constitutional standard for elected Congressmen vis-à-vis appointed ones, a suspect concept at best.

    The Senate may have the power to judge a “return” or appointment, but after Powell there must be an objective and fundamental defect in the process that qualifies as a basis to deny the seat. Powell also stands for the concept that the Senate’s power is not completely plenary, but is balanced by the power of the Supreme Court to decide if the reason advanced by the Senate is constitutionally permissible.

    The only reason put forward so far is that Blagojevich is a jerk and possible felon. No argument on that here, but he is also the sitting Governor, and he made what certainly appears to be a lawful, legitimate appointment.

    The Senate Democrats are playing a losing game here, one that they will eventually regret. It is a bit like Lisa Madigan’s filing with the Illinois Supreme Court - it looked like sound politics at the start, but in the long run, and after the matter was completely thought through from a legal perspective, it was simply ill-considered.

    Of course, at the Washington level, the ante runs much higher, and mistakes are far more costly.


  62. - MikeintheSuburbs - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 4:26 pm:

    Nice to see that Rich made it through the night OK. The Slate article nicely clears up the authority issue. It seems that the concept of “returns” as used in the Olde Days incorporates appointments, so that should not be an impediment, not that it can’t still be fodder for litigation.

    After taking a nice New Year’s Day walk in the woods I started thinking about a possible compromise scenario. Although the Senate can certainly investigate the appointment, in the end they probably won’t come up with anything on Burris and it’s really not fair to saddle him with guilt by association forever. At some point, they have to “clear” him. Then what?

    Once the dust has settled a bit and Blago is safely out of office, everyone may be able to save face by having Quinn confirm Burris’s appointment following the completion of whatever investigation is done by the Senate. He won’t be able to win anything in 2010 so the field will be essentially open, and everyone comes out looking good. All lawsuits will be dropped and peace will return to the land. This may seem a hard pill to swallow now, but I suspect this is the exact kind of thing Obama would approve when the time is right.


  63. - Little Egypt - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 4:35 pm:

    Mike, I wouldn’t count Burris out in 2010. If he is this big of a suckup to Blago, I’m betting Blago’s financial backers would get behind Burris and fill his campaign war chest. Many of them would be plenty angry about what has happend to their boy Blago that they would seek revenge in the easiest manner possible and that would be to financially back Burris. In Illinois, we all know elected positions are bought and paid for and the more campaign money, the better.


  64. - Blago Sphere - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 4:45 pm:

    It will be interesting to see if there are any organizations willing to step forward and seek permission from the IL SC to submit an Amicus Curiae brief in support of Senator Burris’s suit against Secretary White.

    The Urban League, IL NAACP, and Black Contractors United are the one’s that come most immediately to mind. Without the promise of an alternative African American appointment from Quinn, it would be consistent with their established mission statements to do so; even if it meant opposing Jesse White in the process.

    Given that there is no other African American in the U.S. Senate; I don’t believe Obama’s opposition to the appointment provides sufficient cover; if the attempts to reject Burris were ultimately to be successful, and Quinn were not to follow suit with his selection. Those pre-disposed to this way of thinking already have held Obama suspect on this front in the past, and the collapse of a Burris appointment, followed by a Schakowsky replacement by Quinn would only throw gas on their fire.

    O’bama would have been better suited to stay out of this I think; and let the Senate take the heat for dealing with this. He could have expressed regret, and disappointment at what has taken place, and then assured all that he felt the Senate leadership was capable of resolving this satisfactorily.


  65. - Bill Baar - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 5:53 pm:

    Excellant comment Blago Sphere… I couldn’t resist posting it.


  66. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 6:46 pm:

    ===followed by a Schakowsky replacement by Quinn would only throw gas on their fire.===

    You’re assuming way, way too much there.


  67. - Maggie - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:36 pm:

    I just saw a great bumper sticker with Blago’s smiling face. It read:
    Illinois Voters
    Bleepin Golden.


  68. - True Observer - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:36 pm:

    By virtue of what Blago and Rush have done and said, the Democratic Establishment (Machine)will do all in its power to make sure the 2010 nominee is African American.

    They dare not risk alienating their African American base for whom this seat has become an entitlement.

    Because of the dirth of truly qualified African Americans in Illinois, the Republicans are in the game.

    JJJ - Did he or didn’t he try to buy?
    Rush - Does anyone really think…?
    Davis - 16 years Ward Committeeman. Probably the only sitting congressman who doesn’t trust anyone to hold the Democratic State Central Committee post for his own District.

    Who’s left?

    White - He’ll have to disclose all the relatives on the payroll.
    Stroeger - What can one say?

    The two dogs that didn’t bark:

    Seals
    Burris


  69. - Pot calling kettle - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:37 pm:

    And why wouldn’t Quinn appoint Valerie Jarrett. (As long as he’s cool with getting only appreciation…)


  70. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 7:41 pm:

    Absolutely. After all, we Have transcended the racial abyss in these modern enlightened times.


  71. - Rep. John Fritchey - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:23 pm:

    First off - Happy New Year everybody!

    Little Egypt - I decided to make lemonades from lemons and just wound up substituting the sand for salt, and everything else just fell into place. I’ve been up and at it since 8 this morning and am ready to get back to work.

    The only thing that threw me for a loop is when I was walking down the beach today and saw some bearded guy in a Hawaiian shirt and a thong passed out over his laptop :)


  72. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:31 pm:

    Very good Fritchey, VERY good. The Polaroids will be worth a few years membership, at least.


  73. - Rep. John Fritchey - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 8:39 pm:

    I assure you that the only thing that viewing the Polaroids will get you is a few years of therapy.


  74. - Blago Sphere - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 9:00 pm:

    Bill Baaar;

    Thanks for the hat tip. A coalition of support at the SC would do Burris a world of good right now. While using Bobby Rush to be the bad guy, while Burris takes the high road was well planned and may appear less orchestrated to the unenlightened, the wind is running out of those sails. The made for TV moment of the guards blocking Burris at the doors to the Senate could incite something from the greater masses, but I don’t think even Harry Reid is that dumb at this point; even if he thinks Obama is his backstop here.

    The interesting part of this is that Quinn; if it were to come down to him is left in a position where he needs to deal, but can not outwardly deal because even some greased political back scratching favors will seem larcenous to the average voter at this point. He would run the risk of poisoning both his appointee, and himself and both could end up losers in 2010 as a result.

    Those organizations I mentioned and others; grounded on the premise of African American Empowerment need to step forward and speak up, because Quinn can not deal with them now, and yet they need to lay the groundwork to keep the pressure on him should the Burris appointment unravel. Otherwise the next appointment could be having their picture taken at the swearing in before they even get to the starting line if they wait this out on the sidelines.


  75. - A Citizen - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 9:14 pm:

    - Blago Sphere -
    So, let me get this straight, you are lobbying for Oberweis as the clearly uncut deal appointment?


  76. - Obama's Puppy - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 9:48 pm:

    Political considerations have caused this appointment to become a national issue with U.S Constitutional implications. Rod can go down as the elected official that not only put his own state’s constitution in question but now the U.S. COnstituion. Maybe he can do something that would makes us debate the finer points of the Magna Carta(sp).


  77. - Blago Sphere - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:00 pm:

    A Citizen,
    I don’t like ice cream, and I wouldn’t even buy milk from Oberweis if I was stranded on a desert island with nothing but Oreos to eat, and he offered free delivery to me.

    A Frank Compton caretaker could make the most sense if they agreed to get behind another African American candidate in the primary/general in 2010. Daley would be smart to cut that deal with JJJ, if he survives not being indicted this go around. If he could push him off to the Senate, and then his wife to his Congressional seat they would both be out of town never to look back and he could cut the deal for the Hispanic puppet mayor will look to install upon his retirement some time not long after the Olympics, if they can get them.


  78. - the Other Anonymous - Thursday, Jan 1, 09 @ 10:10 pm:

    Blago Sphere,

    I don’t think in today’s political environment the regular Democrats (i.e., machine) can dictate the outcome of a Senate primary. They certainly didn’t in Obama’s case.

    There are several potential white candidates against Burris who can raise the millions of dollars needed to run statewide. With the possible exception of JJJr, I can’t think of any potential African-American candidate who can raise that kind of dough.


  79. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 12:08 am:

    For the record, I have never worn a thong. And I would never, ever bring my fancy schmancy laptop to the beach. ‘Twas a gift.

    I have, however, occasionally “rested my eyes” on various beaches of the world.

    Carry on.


  80. - John Bambenek - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 6:23 am:

    Guys, impeaching Blago doesn’t nullify Burris. The “appointment” is made. If it’s legal, it doesn’t matter if Burris isn’t sworn in immediately. White’s roadblock is a non-factor, that’s a losing case. The US Senate running the clock for 90 days helps, but again, if they appointment is legit then they have to seat him. Burris wouldn’t have taken this if he didn’t want to fight for it.

    The only way to nullify this now is to pass a special election. It’s not ex post facto because the law says the appointment is temporary until the next general election. They can set general elections whenever they want. Right now, the only way to outmaneuver Blago is for that special election (albeit, he may not sign it. Pass it ASAP after Jan. 14th, let Blago pocket veto it, and then override. Game over.


  81. - Bill - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 7:07 am:

    There is no logical reason and no upside for the US Senate Dems to refuse to seat Roland Burris. He will be a freshman Senator who will be a reliable vote as the Congress tries to tackle the severe crises left by the Bush administration and six out of eight years of republican dominance in Congress.
    Does the entire country have to suffer because Harry Reid shot off his big mouth in phony outrage after Fitzgerald blundered and jumped the gun on the Blagojevich arrest?
    Reid is “Leader” because he managed to last longer than anyone else. Dick Durbin and Obama should be ashamed of themselves for enabling this non-entity who represents probably the most corrupt state in the union after Illinois.
    Burris is duly appointed, he is qualified, and, in my opinion will be an excellent Senator, particularly given the current make up of the Senate. Maybe somebody ought to check out Reid’s background and who his big contributors are. I think Roland’s integrity and experience and accomplishments would look pretty good compared to Reid’s.
    There is still time for them to do the right thing and seat Burris with the rest of the new class.


  82. - the Other Anonymous - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 7:38 am:

    John Bambeneck writes:

    The only way to nullify this now is to pass a special election. It’s not ex post facto because the law says the appointment is temporary until the next general election. They can set general elections whenever they want.

    Eh, not quite. The Election Code defines “general election” as the elections held in even-numbered years. There is more than a little problem in trying to draft a bill that would redefine “general election” in a way that would apply only to a special election for US Senate but not to any other office elected in even-numbered years.

    So, the solution would be to amend the law allowing for appointment of a US Senator. And that’s exactly where an ex post facto challenge comes in.

    I think the fatal flaw in Reid’s reasoning is that he thinks he can make the Senate appointment so toxic that Blagojevich and Roland Burris will simply withdraw the appointment. I think most regular readers of this blog know by now: ain’t going to happen.


  83. - Narcoleptic - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 7:57 am:

    The question, I think, is if you are Fred Lebed does this help your consulting business or does it hurt it? Will Emil sign on as a new Illinois-based consultant to attract bond business?

    Go, Bill! Seven a.m. catalyst for a blogjam!


  84. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 8:16 am:

    –There is no logical reason and no upside for the US Senate Dems to refuse to seat Roland Burris.–

    Bill, it’s not about another reliable vote for their majority.

    The logical reason is that he’s appointed by a governor who’s going to be indicted for trying to sell the seat and who has become an international symbol of corruption. The upside to the action is the GOP will not be able to pound Senate Dems for associating with that corruption.

    They really don’t have a choice. They can’t willingly play ball with Blago. They have to make an effort. If the courts force Burris on them, so be it, they have cover.

    If there has been a miscalculation, and that’s not clear yet, it was in opposing a special election Dems would probably win anyway.


  85. - John Bambenek - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 8:19 am:

    Yup, on re-reading the law, you are right. Burris is Senator until Jan. 2011.

    It’s game over.


  86. - Fan of the Game - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 8:26 am:

    Just wondering…how do Burris and Durbin get along? Any relationship there at all?


  87. - Gabriel - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 8:37 am:

    And again, we’re back to square one. The Illinois Democratic Party is in control of the process to allow this charade to continue or to step up and clean it up and support a special election.

    The longer the Illinois Democratic Party sleeps on these powers, the greater the burden they shift to the national Democratic Party. Senator Reid is not looking forward to being the point man for the deteriorating image of the national Democratic Party if he has to seat Roland Burris.


  88. - Nero - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:10 am:

    This HUGE MESS could’ve been easily avoided if the GA put their politics aside and had quickly passed SE legislation. But, they lacked the self- control and competence to do so and now they’ve allowed this to happen… thanks Springfield!!! Even without Blago in the mix the GA couldn’t get it right and boy did they screw this up royally!!!


  89. - Blago Sphere - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:18 am:

    This didn’t take long. Please cue the background music for the Amicus Curiae briefs:

    {Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, “the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights and direct services organization,” said African-American voters and officials are eager to see a black lawmaker take Obama’s place in the Senate.

    {”It is important to many of us that there be African-American representation in the U.S. Senate. We’re very proud of Barack Obama, but it is a fact that the potential is there for the Senate to go back to being an all-white body.”}


  90. - Narcoleptic - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:20 am:

    Botton line, Rod is gone. After all the wailing about the end of the Dems, MJM and Cullerton will oversee his ouster. Burris may or may not remain, but really in the grand scheme the plum is the office of the Governor. I think everyone knows that.

    Burris is a distraction (a good one, Rod, I’ll have to admit).

    But, we’ll have our U.S. Senator–a Dem for awhile, maybe a Republican after 2010. Really, who cares? The prize is the where RRB is sitting right now.

    Don’t forget THE Map!


  91. - MikeintheSuburbs - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:29 am:

    One blogger has raised the idea, if I understand it correctly, that once an appointment has been made, a special election can no longer be scheduled. A cursory review of the 17th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the State Constitution and the Illinois Election Code, did not reveal anything of the sort, but I didn’t take the time to really go through everything carefully so if anyone has a citation to support that, it would be helpful.

    As I stated previously, I believe that once this whole thing blows over and Blago is safely out of office, Burris will be cleared of any personal wrongdoing and be seated. ANything else just gives rise to two years of fruitless and divisive litigation over the seat. Burris will vote with the Dems so I think they will prefer this route to a Special Election where the low turnout amoung the Dem support groups and the scandal fallout could make the outcome problematic. There is no way Burris can be re-elected unless he is given the opportunity to distinguish himself as a fighter for the seat a la “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”. If the Senate is too stubborn and wants to deny him the seat, he will wind up looking like the victim.

    I do not agree with Rich’s apparent view that politics trumps everything in a political arena. After Bush v. Gore, and two Presidential impeachemt proceedings, I think the public expects some sort of Rule of Law to be applied. If Burris didn’t personally do anything wrong, I don’t think that a blanket “We won’t seat anyone appointed by this Governor because he tried to sell the seat” will fly, unless it can be shown that Burris, in fact, bought it.


  92. - Blago Sphere - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:30 am:

    Narco,

    Lest ye forget; THE MAP is not nearly as great a priority as THE DAUGHTER.


  93. - Narcoleptic - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:40 am:

    Ah, true, Mr. Sphere. No argument on that here. Priorities will out in the end as ye all shall see, a bitter end though it may be.


  94. - Bill - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:44 am:

    Word,
    Your warped opinion of the governor notwithstanding, Burris was legally appointed and should be seated. Blagojevich has not even been indicted let alone convicted. Now SuperFitz needs another 3 months to fabricate a case.There is no legal justification for depriving Illinois of its duly appointed Senator. Rod is not the issue here. Burris is. He should be seated with the rest of the freshman class.
    Roland will be a fine senator in the tradition of Paul Douglas, Alan Dixon, Paul Simon, and Barack Obama.
    I’m very disappointed in Durbin for not standing up to Reid’s self-righteous pontificating.


  95. - Narcoleptic - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 9:50 am:

    Does anyone recall what the focus was before the Burris appointment? :)


  96. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 10:15 am:

    Bill, you yourself in your first post called Illinois the most corrupt state in the nation. I don’t necessarily agree, but I assume you think the governor has played a role in that designation. That’s what the Senate Dems don’t want to be associated with.


  97. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 10:24 am:

    Blago says his reason to appoint Burris is because Illinois needs a Senator-right away. He already knew that the Senate and Jesse White said they wouldn’t seat his appointment which means this will be delayed and held up for a long-long time. Which means this has had the opposite effect to his stated reasons-which is exactly what he wants to happen.

    Blago real reason is to screw everything up and start a race fight. It never fails to amaze me how this demented individual finds pawns willing to help his schemes. He actually had Hastert and Poshard helping him all summer trying to get billions more for him to muscle contractors. Bobby Rush and Roland Burris have no future so they were ripe for exploitation. Blago is a predator that feeds on the weakest, the oldest or the injured.

    Hurting Illinois is precisely what Blago wants right now. He wants us to feel his pain. He is such a horrible person and it is a blessing that he was exposed so thoroughly that he has no hope of redemption. Truly a miracle.


  98. - Bill - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 10:31 am:

    The only thing that was supposedly exposed was that the FBI was illegally wiretapping the governor and that the governor used a few F-bombs while bs-ing with a few buddies.


  99. - Bill Baar - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 10:44 am:

    Arlene Jones from Austin Weekly News has posted an alleged transcript from one of those wiretaps.

    If that’s authentic, and I don’t have a clue, than we are in for a really wild time come Fitz’s trial. These guys are amazing to listen too.


  100. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 10:50 am:

    Well Bill, it worked and that is the blessing. He and his wife are thoroughly disgraced in any objective thinking persons mind. It’s like the politician from the Dead Zone movie. The truth got out for the world to see.


  101. - littleguy - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:05 am:

    Please remember something everyone. Pat Quinn has always been a bit of a “maverick” (how we have come to hate that word), so he could just name Roalnd Burris himself and let the empty suit fill our his tombstone which rumor has is being chiseled as we speak.


  102. - Pot calling kettle - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:05 am:

    If Rod were truly interested in getting a Senator in that seat ASAP, he would have put in Obama’s top pick back in November. Under the current circumstances, he would have asked Pat Q., Mike M., Emil J. and John C. to make a recommendation which he would have appointed. Since he did neither of those, it’s fair to assume it’s still about Rod, not what is best for Illinois.


  103. - Concerned Observer - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:06 am:

    BB, I’m pretty sure that’s fake. Not only because of what’s in it, but because it sounds remarkably similar to a fake transcript I heard being discussed on the radio a couple of days ago.

    It’s a fun read though.


  104. - the Other Anonymous - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:06 am:

    Bill, do you have any good information to share with us as to why the wiretaps were illegal? Seriously, I’m not trying to ask in a snarky way — but is there something about the wiretaps that’s a problem?

    In the same way — and again, not to be snarky, but I’m very curious — what do you think the “full story” will be? How do we explain away the quoted excerpts from the wires: inaccurate, out of context, what?


  105. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:08 am:

    Fox Chicago says Blago is going to try to escort Burris onto the Senate floor next week. I think Blago has floor privileges as a former Congressman.

    Won’t Cheney be administering the oaths? Could be a photo for the ages.


  106. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:11 am:

    BB, that was posted weeks ago on another Chicago Blog, maybe The Reader. It’s a gag.


  107. - Keep Me Out of Illinois - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:16 am:

    Bill Baar - that transcript is a joke. It was written for Daily Kos in mid-December:
    http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/12/12/142929/59


  108. - Capitol View - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:18 am:

    I agree that Burris should go to Washington and present his governor’s proclamation of appointment to VP Cheney. But Cheney may want to deny another Democratic seat for the duration of the rest of the current Congress; some interesting stuff might still get voted on in the closing days, as we do in Illinois with the outgoing General Assembly.

    Hey, Prez-elect Obama: how about appointing Burris to chair the Railroad Retirement System, or another federal plum job in Chicago with a fancy title but little more than a comfy seat and salary for our buddy Roland?


  109. - Bill - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:18 am:

    Other Anon,
    I believe the governor’s counsel when he says that the taps were not legal. I’ll wait for the discovery hearing if it ever comes to that to hear why. As for the FBI summary of excerpts from the supposed taps I don’t believe that what was said was illegal. No one acted on anything discussed. When two people can be convicted for merely fooling around on the phone, I think that we, as a country, are in big trouble. I think the real reason that the US Atty needed an extension is because the case, so far, is very weak and unwinnable. As a juror, I would vote to acquit based on what I’ve heard and read, so far.


  110. - Blue in DuPage - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:21 am:

    I’m interested as well, Bill, why do you seem to think the FBI wiretaps are illegal? Because Genson said so??


  111. - Bill Baar - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:21 am:

    Thanks appreciate it. I’ll tell Arlene.


  112. - the Other Anonymous - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:25 am:

    Thanks, Bill. That puts your comments in context.


  113. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:30 am:

    Bill Barr and Blagosphere, your tinfoil hats have gotten the better of you both. I would suggest taking a break from posting here for awhile.


  114. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 2, 09 @ 11:36 am:

    “As a juror, I would vote to acquit based on what I’ve heard and read, so far.”

    Bill, I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t make it through voir dire so you should feel free to make other plans. lol


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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        * Income stagnant in Illinois..
        * Pretty faces draw eyes to animal abuse..
        * Illinois jobless rate continues 6-month decline..
        * Bruce Rauner..
        * Steve Cochran Show “Polticial Hour” featuring R.....
        * Illinois jobless rate declines in August..


        * 2 Illinois women die from West Nile virus
        * Emanuel backs away from naming school after Obama
        * Economy remains slow in rural parts of 10 states
        * Illinois jobless rate declines in August
        * Alleged gang member sentenced; judge cites murder
        * Illinois school resumes classes after gas leak
        * ComEd settles for $46M with state of Illinois
        * 2 college students drowned in Naperville quarry
        * Judge: Libertarian candidate can be on ballot
        * Company wants to drill for oil in McLean County

        * Illinois’ jobless rate continues 6-month decline
        * Sangamon Co. judge: Libertarian candidate for governor can stay on ballot
        * Jeb Bush headlining Chicago fundraiser for Rauner
        * Rochester resident to lead State Board of Elections
        * GOP appeal seeks to knock Libertarian gubernatorial candidate off ballot
        * Jesse White to focus on technology, highway safety if re-elected
        * Rauner’s ethics reform plan targets lobbyists, lawmakers
        * White to focus on technology, highway safety in fifth term
        * Quinn blasts NFL owners with dig at Rauner
        * Hundreds apply for jobs at northern Illinois federal prison

        * Home Depot says 56 million payment cards affected by data breach
        * A big jolt to your power bill just got one step closer
        * Obamacare enrollment dips to 7.3 million
        * Export-Import Bank gets a reprieve
        * ComEd to refund $46 million in settlement


        * Drug dealer held accountable in Chicago cop’s murder, gets 35 years in prison
        * Highland Park woman gets 5 years for killing 5-year-old girl
        * Ald. Munoz: Democratic Party support for Emanuel in mayor’s race premature
        * 16-year-old is second person charged in fatal home invasion
        * NU prof realizing genius grant is no prank
        * Tightwalk across the Chicago River is ‘real deal’
        * 16 suburban firefighters stranded in Mexico after hurricane
        * Salami-smuggling mob enforcer gets 15 years for gun rap
        * Trump happy over Emanuel crackdown on signs
        * Probation officer suspended after teen’s assault on CSU student


        * Report: More flu shots given across U.S. and Illinois' rate flat
        * Brandon Marshall addresses domestic violence, allegations from troubled past
        * Mayor: New high school won't be named after President Obama
        * 'Obama College Prep' blocked, but lots of other things bear his name
        * Gang leader held responsible in '08 slayings of officer, companion
        * ComEd customers to get refunds in 'smart grid' settlement
        * Indictment charges police commander with shoving gun barrel down suspect's throat
        * Onetime top aide to Daley sentenced to probation for theft
        * Cubs leave Kane County for South Bend
        * Cops: Boy, 15, went missing 2 days ago from Southwest Side


        * How do you find high school dropouts?
        * Plan Would Give Police Cameras, Raise Fines
        * Can A Governor Really Create Jobs?
        * Governor's Race Has A Third Contender; Judge Keeps Libertarians On Ballot
        * Humanities Film Series Kicks Off In Jacksonville
        * Court Ruling Could Impact Governor's Race
        * Indicted police commander suspended from duty 11 times, records show
        * Despite Outbreak, Illinois Virus Cases Remain Low - Why?
        * Teen Arrested For Threat Against Glenwood High School
        * I Like Illinois Website Debuts, In Time For The Election


        * Illinois’ jobless rate continues 6-month decline
        * Sangamon Co. judge: Libertarian candidate for governor can stay on ballot
        * Jeb Bush headlining Chicago fundraiser for Rauner
        * Christopher Mooney: Evidence in policymaking — no cure-all, but better than the alternative
        * Eugene Robinson: Hillary Clinton needs to tell us her vision
        * George Will: Obama needs Congress to approve this war
        * On Lincoln’s Side: Washington’s close call
        * Bernard Schoenburg: New poll, AFSCME nod help change narrative
        * Rochester resident to lead State Board of Elections
        * GOP appeal seeks to knock Libertarian gubernatorial candidate off ballot


        * Coroner called to residence in rural St. Clair County
        * SJO Academic Letter Ceremony
        * Part of Lake Egypt Water District under boil order
        * Strike Day 6: Highland community holds prayer vigil as teachers union, school board continue negotiations
        * Allison tries footgolf
        * Carbondale groups to hold candidate forum
        * ADM evacuates lab in Clinton
        * Belleville robbery report turns out to be false alarm
        * Who's in the news? Gale Vyncke
        * Towboat sinks in Mississippi River near Chester


        * Aurora cops looking for man who tried to lure children
        * Real-life Grinch steals gifts earmarked for needy families
        * Officials working to get stranded firefighters out of Mexico
        * 16 Hoffman Estates firefighters stranded in Mexico after hurricane
        * Football: Scouting Week 4, Northwest

        * Efforts to streamline discovery, developme...
        * Shimkus Discusses Presidential Policies - ...
        * Shimkus not taking election for granted - ...
        * At a glance: How metro-east residents vote...
        * Shimkus office hours set in Danville - Cha...
        * Keeping the Internet Open and Free | Comme...
        * Illinois vote: Dems split on aid for Syria...
        * Polly Sulcer goes to Washington to push Co...
        * Deadline set for military academy applicat...
        * Applications for military academies being ...

        * Lab Day Highlight Labs' Contribution to U.......
        * Top Dem Says Another Big ISIS Vote is Comi......
        * Top Dem Says Another Big ISIS Vote is Comi......
        * Top Dem Says Another Big ISIS Vote is Comi......
        * Top Dem Says Another Big ISIS Vote is Comi......

        * Senators, Energy CEOs Call for Long-Term E......
        * Mary Cheney: Equality can only be achieved......
        * Senate unanimously confirms John Bass as t......

        * Illinois to Fund Kidney Transplants for Undocumented Residents
        * Higgins: The Ray Rice Mess and Women in Combat
        * Coulter castigates conservatives and libertarians
        * Obama administration forcing new gun buyers to declare race, ethnicity
        * Gov. Mike Huckabee Endorses Mike Bost for U.S. Congress
        * Hoffman Estates officials counting on Sears staying
        * 'Suicide fanatics' facing demonstrators in Chicago
        * Rauner Criticizes Illinois Medical Marijuana Law
        * Chicago Housing Activists Fight To Save A Rogers Park 'Community House' (VIDEO)
        * Callis releases new negative ad on Davis


        * Quinn Misleads Public on IDOT Again
        * Governor Quinn Visits Chicago’s Hydro, Inc. as Illinois’ Unemployment Rate Continues to Drop - State Jobless Rate Reaches Lowest Level in Six Years
        * Rauner Launches New TV Ad: 100 Years
        * 100 Years
        * Bruce Rauner Announces Ethics Blueprint




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