Blagojevich is expected to appoint Roland Burris, former Illinois Attorney General, to Obama's vacant Senate seat some time today. Interesting move; what will happen now?
Burris is a 71-year-old African American, and was in fact the first African American to be elected to a statewide office in Illinois in the 1978. He was the state comptroller and then the state AG beginning in 1990, and is currently in a private law practice.
Blagojevich is a criminal and is only appointing Burris because he's an arrogant twit trying to stay relevant and maintain a false front of innocence.
The Senate has said they will not seat anyone Blago appoints - not to say they won't take Burris BECAUSE Blago appoints him, but they won't take him without serious consideration.
Consider: Obama's seat (now empty) will be up for re-election in 2010, so whoever goes in now needs to fit one of two roles. Either a) the new Senator needs to be a solid placeholder for Illinois to produce a superior Senator for 2010, or b) he needs to be a solid Senator who can work for two years and win re-election in 2010. Burris will be a recognizable, positive name to Democrats older than us, and would probably be a good choice despite not being in that famous short list of a few weeks ago. It's entirely possible that, if seated, he could be re-elected in 2010.
Back to the Senate's reluctance to seat a Blago appointee... they are running out of options. I think this appointment today is just a stunt to generate talk and for the governor to try and flex whatever pathetic political muscle he thinks he has left. However, with just three weeks until the new congress is sworn in, the pressure should be on for the Senate to seat another Democrat just to solidify their majority, especially with the Minnesota race looking more and more likely to swing our way.
Plus, if the Joe LIEberman ordeal was any indication, Harry Reid is basically a bitch and the Senate will end up accepting Burris by the end of the week.