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Roland Burris, the apointed junior Senator of Illinois, arrived in Washington DC, but the Senate (Sen. harry Reid) refused to acknowledge his credentials and seat him for the beginning of the 111th Congress. Named to fill the vacant seat of President Elect Barack Obama by embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, the Illinois Secretary of State refused to sign Burris’ appointment.
Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh, while enjoying watching the Democrats “eat their own”, has said that Sen. Harry Reid is on “thin ice” in refusing Burris his seat. There is no dispute over Burris’ qualifications. Gov. Blagojevich signed the necessary orders for a special election to fill the seat of Rep. Rahm Emanuel, and it was accepted by the Illinois Secretary of State. The question then becomes why is one action by the Illinois Governor acceptable, while another is deemed not to be acceptable?
So, what do you think?
The two-counts that are revealed in the 76 page affidavit that precipitated the arrest of Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Tuesday is merely the tip of the iceberg in the ongoing investigation into the Governor, Tony Rezko, and others in the well-publicized world of Chicago and Illinois corrupt politics.
U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald chose his words very carefully at the press conference which outlined what the Government was investigating. First and foremost, the Feds wanted to stop any further actions, aprticularly with regard to the filling of the Senate seat vacated when Barack Obama resigned his Senate position. He further went on to say that no one should draw any conclusions about any of the individuals named within the affidavit, and that the “affidavit” does not imply any wrongdoing by the President-Elect.
Then there is the responses from the President-Elect himself, wherein he says that “we, I, have had no conversations with the Governor”. This statement, however, completely contradicts the statements, on television, made by Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod on November 23rd, wherein he stated that Obama had discussed several names with Gov. Blagojevich, and that Obama was “fond” of several of the individuals discussed. When questioned on the contradiction, the Obama spokepeople stated that Axelrod was “mistaken.”
Fitzgerald is known for his thoroughness in his job, and is relentless in making sure that everything is in order. As the new administration begins in the White House next month, Fitzgerald was to be one of the many whose resignations would be requested by the White House. It is now assumed that given the volatile nature of this present investigation, it would be unwise for the Obama team to replace Fitzgerald.
Does that mean, however, that Fitzgerald will protect the President-Elect as the investigation proceeds? Since there are hours of wiretap recordings, it can be assumed that there is information not yet released that could implicate members of the Obama staff, if not directly to Obama himself. Will Fitzgerald use these recordings, or stop short of any implication of the President-Elect? Going a step further, since the Chicago Police Department has not been able to move further on the murder of Trinity Church Choir Director Donald Young, and the various threats and actions against Larry Sinclair, will Fitzgerald be able to see if any of these other activities have any links in his corruption investigation?
From a different angle, given that there are allegations about deals for campaign contributions, union endorsements, etc., and given that some of the Obama contributors included “Mickey Mouse”, will the Federal Elections Commission reverse itself, and look into the contributions made to the Obama for President campaign?
Looks like old fashioned Chicago politics at its best!!
After meeting privately to discuss the cases the US Supreme Court would hear, or to issue Writs of Certiorari upon, the list of cases denied or granted was issued late Friday afternoon (Dec. 5th), and the Leo Donofrio case questioning President-Elect Barack Obama’s citizenship and Presidential eligibility was not on EITHER list.
A spokesman for the Supreme Court said that no decision had been reached as of yet, and that a decision from the Justices would most likely be forthcoming in the next week or so.
Unlike other cases, such as Pennsylvania attorney Philip Berg’s case, which allege that Obama was NOT born in Hawaii, the Donofrio case concedes Obama’s verbal assertion that he was born in Hawaii, but Donofrio claims that Obama’s British citizenship, afforded to him as the son of a British subject, precludes him from being the President. Barack Obama Sr., as a Kenyan citizen, was automatically a British citizen, since Kenya was a part of the British Commonwealth.
Other cases are still pending in the lower courts, including the lawsuit brought by Presidential candidate Alan Keyes against California’s Secretary of State to stop the certification of the State’s Electors. Each of the cases that have been filed throughout the country have the potential of being heard in the Supreme Court, based upon their outcome at the lower court and appellate level.
Since the Director of the Hawaii Dept. of Health stopped short of stating that the documents on file in Hawaii state that Barack Obama was born in Hawaii, the only satisfactory resolution to the “birthplace” part of the citizenship question would be for Barack Hussein Obama II to authorize the Hawaiian authorities to release the vaulted documents.
The Electoral College can, though it is unlikely, vote by conscience, based upon the Obama team’s like of candor in this matter, and not vote for Obama. Some states require their Electors to the Electoral College to vote as the state voted, but others allow the Elector’s a bit of discretion in their votes. In fact, a massive lobbying effort directly to the Electors in some states has been going on since November 4th.
Although President-Elect Obama has resigned his Senate seat, a move which is irreversible, it is noteworthy that Sen. Joe Biden has not yet resigned his seat, nor has Rep. Rahm Emanuel, and Sen. Hillary Clinton has said that she will not resign until she is confirmed as Secretary of State by the Senate. Senator Clinton’s decision not to resign just yet is completely understandable, but if their is such certainty in Obama’s election, one has to wonder why Sen. Biden and Rep. Emanuel have not resigned their positions.