At a party last night, Roland Burris came up. Not to the dining table itself, but in conversation. The soon to be seated junior senator from Illinois must be getting his jollies knowing that he is the roast of the town.
Everyone agreed that legally, there was no reason to deny him Obama’s seat. It was pointed out that Reid and the democrats made a bigger deal than warranted and ended up with a big mess. Yes, Blagojevich outsmarted them all, but they could have hashed it out without promoting the Blago & Burris Circus. And it does seem like Burris is clean.
However, what does it say about a man who accepts an appointment from a corrupt official? Who denies that race has nothing to do with it? Who is happy to go through a tainted process in order to acquire power? Who claims that he’s not going to make a scene. “I don’t want to give you all a circus.” he promised. Yet here he is, the ringmaster, playing the democrats, media and all of us. And loving every minute of it.
But why shouldn’t he? Clearly he is great. His memorial already awaits his passage to the next life (where surely his rewards will even be greater). Emblazoned on the monument are the Illinois seal, the very large inscription “Trail Blazer,” followed by “First African-American in Illinois to Become:” and in bullets, all his illustrious posts such as “Exchange Student to the University of Hamburg.” A veritable marble CV. I wonder though where he will squeeze in “Appointed Senator by Corrupt and Egomaniacal Governor.”
More importantly, he has been anointed by God Himself. Now how can we argue with that? As the Chicago Sun Times reports:
“I am now the junior senator from the state of Illinois,” he said from the pulpit of a South Side church on what he said was the eve of his trip to Washington.
Burris and his backers described his future in religious terms, saying his move to the U.S. Senate is preordained.
“Friends, we’re going to have to have some powerful prayer. . . . They can’t deny what the Lord has ordained,” said Burris at New Covenant Baptist Church, 740 E. 77th, surrounded by ministers, politicians and activists.
He said he was humbled by the support but said Illinois couldn’t send a better person to D.C., citing his history as a four-time-elected statewide officeholder.
What does this all say? Sad.
Image from M. Spencer Green/AP Photo.