I refer, of course, to Rod Blagojevich:
Brushing aside charges that he tried to sell Illinois’ vacant U.S. Senate seat, Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris to the post today in defiance of Senate leaders who said they would not admit anyone he selected.
It was an abrupt about-face for Blagojevich, who had said after his Dec. 9 corruption arrest that he favored a special election to find a successor to President-elect Barack Obama. But Blagojevich said he acted after the Democratic-controlled General Assembly declined to approve legislation for a special election.
“Please don’t allow the allegations against me to taint this good and honest man,” Blagojevich said while introducing Burris at a downtown news conference.
President-elect Barack Obama said in a statement:
“Roland Burris is a good man and a fine public servant, but the Senate Democrats made it clear weeks ago that they cannot accept an appointment made by a governor who is accused of selling this very Senate seat. I agree with their decision, and it is extremely disappointing that Governor Blagojevich has chosen to ignore it. I believe the best resolution would be for the Governor to resign his office and allow a lawful and appropriate process of succession to take place. While Governor Blagojevich is entitled to his day in court, the people of Illinois are entitled to a functioning government and major decisions free of taint and controversy.”
Alas, it appears that the President-elect and his allies will not be let off the hook that easily. And for those who think that the Senate can just refuse to seat Burris simply because they don’t like Blagojevich . . . well . . . see this.
And pass the popcorn.