Even farces must come to an end.
So, there was Roland Burris, scorned by Speaker of the US House Harry Reid, sitting by Reid, wreathed in smiles and nodding to the cameras, a picture that spoke a thousand words. Between them was a painting of a stern looking Mark Twain. Hovering over Reid’s tuned head, the corner of the frame piercing his noggin, was a painting of an even sterner looking Andy Jackson, founder of the modern Democrat Party.
The two has reached an accommodation. Burris would be questioned under oath by the Illinois senate concerning any deal he might have made with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. And after he had testified under oath, Reid and the No. 2 Senate Democrat, Dick Durbin of Illinois, would be happy to…
Reid said he had nothing against Burris “as an individual.” But there were these storm clouds racing around Burris’ head and, well… you know…
Judicial Watch said it was going to sue the senate if it did not accept Burris as a member because the US Constitution required the senate to do so.
The Black Caucaus was stamping its collective feet, and growing impatient. Reid’s enemies on the right were comparing him to George Wallace, the redneck segregationist who stood in a school doorway rather than allow some inoffensive African American girls and boys to intrude on a white-only school.
Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, a caucus member, said "This is a situation where we have a senator who has now missed out on his first day. It's only fair that he be sworn in immediately. This is a no-brainer."
Illinois state Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie, the chairwoman of Blago’s impeachment committee's said that people must "have a screw loose" to think Blagojevich offered improper deals after being arrested. Blago may be corrupt, but he’s not dumb.
Senate Rules Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein weighed in: "The question is really one, in my view, of law. Does the governor have the power, under law, to make the appointment? And the answer is yes. Is the governor discredited? The answer is yes. Does that affect his appointment power? The answer is no, until certain things happen. Feinstein, earlier not consulted concerning President-elect Barack Obama’s appointment of Leon Panetta as the CIA Dirctor, pointed out that the failure to seat Burris "has ramifications for gubernatorial appointments all over America.” Apparently Reid believes that the rules of the US Senate club supercede those rights and obligations cited in the US Constitution.
And then Burris, a twinkle in his eye, said he should be able to join the Senate "very shortly."
No modern playwright could do justice to this farce. We should have to reincarnate Lucian (2nd century Roman playwright) to cover it, well… better than CNN.