* Mark Brown’s essential thesis is spot on…
I’ll leave it to the proper investigative bodies to decide whether Roland Burris committed perjury last month in testimony before the Illinois House impeachment committee. From a strict legal perspective, maybe he didn’t.
But I’ll tell you straight up, our new U.S. senator proved himself to be a lying little sneak. […]
The problem is that if he couldn’t tell the whole truth previously, why should anybody believe he’s telling the whole truth now? I don’t.
I’m not saying he did anything improper in pursuit of the appointment. I’m just saying there’s no reason at this point to accept his denials that he didn’t. Maybe we’re still not asking him the questions the right way to suit him.
* Brown’s column today goes beyond the House Republican claims that Burris evaded Rep. Jim Durkin’s questions at the House impeachment hearing to something I also pointed out to subscribers this morning. GOP Rep. Jil Tracy attempted to get Burris to talk about his other contacts later in the hearing and Burris was more than just a little evasive…
Tracy: “So you don’t recall that there was anybody else besides Lon Monk that you expressed an interest to at that point?”
Burris: “No, I can’t recall. Because people were coming to me saying, Roland, you should pursue that appointment, you’re qualified, and this was –”
Tracy: “Is there anybody that comes to mind in that light that you can –”
Surely, here was one last chance for Burris to clear the air and mention his contacts with Harris, Wyma or the governor’s brother. But who did he name?
Rich Barber, a friend of his from New Jersey.
I’m still not convinced that Burris legally perjured himself, but it’s obvious that Roland Burris has not been truthful with the state of Illinois. His first sworn affidavit was apparently a complete fabrication, his sworn testimony was filled with repeated acts of evasion, and therefore his recent sworn affidavit simply cannot be trusted.
* And check out how Burris informed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Sen. Dick Durbin about his latest affidavit…
Burris, I’m told by several sources, strolled up to Durbin, the No. 2 Senate leader, and Reid on the Senate floor while they were in the midst of overseeing the vote on President Obama’s stimulus bill, one of the most important pieces of legislation in the history of this nation.
Burris vastly minimized the nature of the document he filed.
He cannot be trusted at all.
* We don’t even know when he was contacted by the G. From yesterday’s Sun-Times…
After contact with federal agents, U.S. Sen. Roland Burris changed his sworn testimony to the Illinois House committee that moved to impeach Gov. Rod Blagojevich, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.
Burris acknowledged Sunday that federal investigators have contacted his lawyers. But he denied that was the reason he sent the House panel new testimony Feb. 5 disclosing for the first time fundraising discussions with Blagojevich’s brother, Robert, who chaired the ex-governor’s campaign fund.
* From today’s Tribune…
But Burris’ efforts to clear up the matter also created more confusion. Asked to clarify his recent acknowledgment that federal authorities want to talk to him about the appointment, he said they may have contacted him even before he testified Jan. 8 to the House panel that recommended impeaching Blagojevich.
* But this is what he and his lawyer said during Sunday’s press conference…
Asked at one point whether federal investigators had talked to him or his aides about the Senate appointment, Burris said he had not been questioned.
“What I understand is some of the agents have reached out to my lawyers,” Burris said, adding, “They want to meet with me.”
Later, Burris attorney Timothy Wright said, “The FBI has not come to us and they’re not asking us for anything.”
* And now the attorney general has joined the call for a criminal investigation…
“This is a particularly frustrating revelation,” [Illinois Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan] said of Burris’ recent disclosure that he had contact with five Blagojevich insiders. “I encourage the Sangamon County state’s attorney to take a closer look at this in the interest of truth, integrity and transparency.”
* Top Republicans Claim Dems tried to ‘Bury’ Affidavit
* Why was affidavit undisclosed for 9 days?
* Burris unscripted: More details about Blagojevich contacts
* ISU President to meet with Senator Burris
* More to the story
* Burris controversy mounts
* Is it perjury or not?: Former Cook County prosecutor Irv Miller said he wouldn’t approve perjury charges if the case were brought to him. There may be inconsistencies in Burris’ statements, but key questions put to Burris by a House impeachment panel were asked in meandering fashion, rather than the specific, “Isn’t-it-a-fact?” style of a prosecutor, he said.
* Silence is Golden? Burris Testimony May Not be Perjury, But Whole Truth Wasn’t Offered
* What qualifies as ‘perjury?’: Faulty memories don’t constitute perjury. Deliberately lying under oath does. Not telling all you know? Well, that’s a bit trickier.
* Burris Stays on Defensive
* Burris says he won’t resign
* Burris says he has ‘nothing to hide’
* Roland Burris Speaks About Calls To Resign
* Burris to tour parts of Illinois
* Burris gets earful on ‘listening tour’
* Burris continues state tour amid fresh firestorm
* Blagojevich ties haunt Burris on tour of Ill.
* Burris defends himself as key Democrat calls for him to ‘come clean’
* Lawmakers skeptical on Burris’ story
* Lawmakers: Burris should have come clean early
* Ill. lawmaker urges cautious inquiry of Burris
* Ill. Atty. Gen. Wants Deeper Burris Investigation
* Burris inquiries urged
* Growing Chorus Seeks Probe Into Burris’ Affairs
* Republicans Pursuing Criminal Charges against Burris
* Locals weigh in on what to do with Burris
* Radogno: Put Burris’ seat on April 7 ballot
* Burris ‘mortally wounded’ by keeping quiet
* Dems worry about Burris in 2010
* Dems hold breath on Burris
* Step aside, senator
* Step down, Burris
* Arena: What to do about Burris?
* Burris lied, and liars get fired
* Will Sen. Burris make it past 2-month mark?
* Burris legacy is tarnished
* Burris backers not ready for real change
* Just when Illinois was ready move on
* Watchdogs Frustrated with Latest Political Controversy