“I was legally and constitutionally appointed. Why won’t they seat me because the governor has legal problems? You know, that’s apples and oranges.”
-Roland W. Burris
This quote from the NY times makes my head spin around on my shoulders.
It most definitely is not apples and oranges. A person seated in the senate is a representative of a portion of a democratic nation. A representative being appointed at all is an unfortunate and necessary evil, a step taken only when such a seat has been vacated early by something like death, or someone being elected president. Because it is necessary, the power to appoint exists. Because it is evil, the power is allocated only to the governor, who is assumed to be a sane person, and himself a representative of the will of the people who elected him.
Blagojevich is clearly not sane, and I seriously doubt the people he represents wanted him to attempt to sell Obama’s senate seat. Furthermore, not only is it wrong that Burris was appointed by Blagojevich, his appointment was a flagrant exploitation of racial tension. The governor knew that blocking Burris’s appointment would be awkward for politicians and that is the only reason he made that appointment. His first attempt, representative Danny Davis (also black, which is why I say Blagojevich’s attempt to exploit racial tension to get his way is “flagrant”), had the good sense, wisdom and common decency to politely inform Blagojevich where he could stick his nomination.
This is absurd. Burris knows what he’s being handed and he’s taking it anyway. I get it. No black people in the senate today. Gotta break those glass ceilings. But this isn’t breaking a glass ceiling. This isn’t an election, it's an appointment, and Burris is attaching himself to one of the most hated men in politics. To a man who actually tried to sell a senate seat to the highest bidder. It is political suicide of the worst sort, because Burris is sacrificing his career not to do something worthwhile or good, but to do something misguided and bad.
That Burris is trying to justify accepting the nomination...
That sickens me.
That absolutely sickens me.