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Roland Burris
  • Possible Corruption in Illinois Proves Value of Newspapers Somehow

    The Chicago Sun-Times has managed to find a silver lining of sorts in this whole Roland Burris scandal thing. It turns out that they've uncovered a nifty little equation, and it goes like this:

    Illinois corruption + stupid politicians = Chicago newspapers are the best

    I ran it through the abacus a few times, and it holds up

    Forgive us for sounding self-congratulatory, but we have a suspicion as to one reason Chicago and Illinois are reputed to be among the most corrupt cities and states in the nation — a vigorously competitive press in this town likes to dig up the bodies.

    Other cities and states are plenty corrupt, no doubt, although we perversely like to flatter ourselves that we stand apart. But few other towns enjoy such an aggressive get-the-story-first culture of newspaper reporting. Nobody in those supposed bastions of integrity seems to do much digging.

    Oh, don't worry. You don't sound "self-congratulatory." Not at all.

    You sound delusional and desperate.

    Tags: Illinois, Roland Burris, Senate
  • Amazingly, Rod Blagojevich's Choice for Senate Might Not Be Totally Clean

    Where do we even begin to make fun of the ridiculous mess that Roland Burris' appointment to a U.S. Senate by disgraced Illinois governor/car salesman Rod Blagojevich has suddenly become?

    First, he admitted that, contradicting the impression he had left over the weekend, he had tried to raise money for Rod Blagojevich after a conversation with the then-governor's brother…

    Then, we learned that two investigations have been launched into the new senator's shifting explanations. One is described by the Chicago Tribune as "a perjury review," being conducted by John Schmidt, the local prosecutor in Springfield, and a Republican… And the Senate ethics committee opened its own probe into the perjury question yesterday, The Hill confirmed.

    So, just to get this straight, it seems as though a governor whom we knew was trying to sell a U.S. Senate seat has a appointed a man — who very likely was trying to buy his way into a U.S. Senate seat — into a U.S. Senate seat.

    Who could have possibly foreseen something like this happening?!

    It's a goodthing the senatorial Democrats didn't make a big deal about trying to block Burris' appointment for two days and then cave in like a bunch of useless sacks all of a sudden or this would be kinda really embarrassing for them.

    Tags: Corruption, Illinois, Rod Blagojevich, Roland Burris, Senate
  • Inauguration Night Life: The Congresspeople of Congress

    Earlier we gave you a taste of the red-hot celebrities who descended upon Washington in hopes of getting within eyeshot of mega-church mega-star Rick Warren!

    What you may not realize is that inside the Beltway, the likes of Tom Brokaw, Michael Wilbon and company are considered second-tier celebrities. Sure they may have fame and fortune, but can any of those guys invoke cloture on floor debate or suggest the absence of a quorum?

    For those kinds of stars, we want you to meet the men and women who keep Washington running… Escorts.

    But also, here are some photos of us with members of Congress.

    Here's California Congressman Henry Waxman, who celebrated his recent election as Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee by purchasing a shiny new pair of platform shoes.

    The hottest name in Washington right now (or at least since Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA) lost re-election) has to be Roland Burris, the brand-new Senator from Illinois. Here he is caught off guard by a man wearing a wet cat on his head, whom he mistook for Governor Rod Blagojevich.

    Sen. Olympia Snowe is a real nice lady who represents the State of Maine. She grew up in Augusta, moved to Auburn, but now lives in Falmouth, which is over under Cuxabexis down to the Penobscot County line, cross to Caucomgomoc, then get on a snow machine and head yourself down to Piscataquis… well… actually you can't get theah from heah.

    We had a great time with Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson, who wants you to know that Omaha is the home of the College World Series and Warren Buffett — and is a great stopover on your way to Wichita.

    And here is Florida Senator Bill Nelson, who is also a nice man. Although come to think of it, maybe this one is Ben Nelson, which would make the other guy Bill. We understand that this kind of confusion is always popping up between President Jimmy Carter and Dwayne "Lil Wayne" Carter.

    Jesse Jackson, Jr. looked trim and fit at the Illinois State Society Gala, and the ladies on his arm would certainly agree. No doubt Jackson had just arrived from a 3 hour sparring session at Sugar Ray Leonard's Maryland gym, preparing for his upcoming prize fight with Rep. Michele "Rambo" Bachmann (R-MN) on the House floor.

    Tags: Ben Nelson, Bill Nelson, California, Florida, Henry Waxman, House of Representatives, Illinois, Inauguration, Jesse Jackson Jr., Maine, Nebraska, Olympia Snowe, Roland Burris, Senate, Washington DC
  • Senators Pile-On Roland Burris After Swearing-In

    Yesterday — despite weeks of a three-ring political circus — Roland Burris was officially sworn in as Illinois' junior senator…

    A who's who of senators and House members flocked to Sen. Roland Burris on the U.S. Senate floor after his swearing-in Thursday as the chamber's newest member, ending an embarrassing episode for Democrats who vowed to block his appointment.

    "I'm feeling terrifically vindicated," Mr. Burris, who was barred from the swearing-in ceremony last week over objections that his appointment was made by scandal-plagued Illinois Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich, said later outside the chamber…

    On the Senate floor, a beaming Mr. Burris found himself wrapped in hugs by fellow Democrats who once locked him out, including the other Illinois senator, Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada.

    Sure, he's beaming now. But I wonder how he'll feel after Harry and Dick catch him alone in the senatorial shower room. When he finds out why they're called "Leader" and "Whip."

    Some advice for the new Senator Burris: Get busy living, or get busy dying.

    Tags: Dick Durbin, Harry Reid, Illinois, Roland Burris, Senate
  • Illinois Has Two Senators Once Again

    Rod Blavojevich may (hopefully) be heading for prison, but it appears that his chosen appointee is heading for the Senate. For real, this time…

    Roland Burris, whose appointment to the Senate was in limbo for nearly two weeks, was accepted Monday by Democratic leaders, and he immediately struck a conciliatory tone with the very people who had tried to keep him out of Congress.

    "Never once did I doubt their intentions were motivated by anything other than doing what's right for the people of Illinois and what they believe had to be done to protect the Senate as an institution," said Burris, who is expected to be sworn in this week.

    That's a nice sentiment on his part. Very gracious of him. Quite befitting a serious statesman.

    Of course, he'll have to change that bullshit tone once he's sworn into the U.S. Legislative Branch.

    Tags: Illinois, Rod Blagojevich, Roland Burris, Senate