Senate majority leader Harry Reid and Senator Dick Durbin have been forced to back down on embattled Governor Blagojevich's appointment of Roland Burris to President Elect Obama's Senate seat. Many have predicted this day would come. The grounds for refusing to accept Burris were very thin from a legal standpoint. Minority advocates will be very pleased to still have an African American Senator. Republicans wanted Burris to promise to not run for re-election in 2010. However, Burris danced around that question and refused to give a clear answer. That means he is surely planning on running for the seat at the next election.
Burris declares fight over, praises opponents
January 12, 2009 4:51 PM | 21 Comments | BREAKING STORY
His appointment finally endorsed by U.S. Senate leadership, Roland Burris said today he expects to be sworn in this week as Barack Obama's replacement.
At a news conference this afternoon, Burris, a former Illinois Attorney General, extended an olive branch to the Democrats who had stood in his way after he was nominated by Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Burris singled out for thanks two of his major opponents, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, who had staunchly opposed the idea of seating any appointee named by Blagojevich. "It will be my honor to both serve with them and to learn from them," Burris said.
And he said he "owed a debt of gratitude" to Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, who had refused to sign papers certifying his nomination. He called White "an honorable man" who "stood for what he believed was right."
It became clear that Burris had won his battle to become the junior senator from Illinois this afternoon when Senate Democratic leaders dropped their objections. Full story here.
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