The Discerning Texan
-- Edmund Burke
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Report: Burris Lied in Sworn Testimony; Blago solicited Money prior to Appointment
Ed Morrissey comments (emphasis mine):
Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s brother solicited U.S. Sen. Roland Burris for up to $10,000 in campaign cash before Blagojevich named Burris to the coveted post — something Burris initially failed to disclose under oath before an Illinois House impeachment panel, records and interviews show.
Burris acknowledges being hit up for the money in a new affidavit he has sent to the head of the House committee that recommended Blagojevich be removed from office.
The affidavit is dated Feb. 5 — three weeks after Burris was sworn in to replace President Obama in the Senate.
Burris — who did not give money to the Blagojevich campaign fund in response to the previously undisclosed solicitation — provided a copy of the sworn statement to the Chicago Sun-Times Friday in response to questions about his contacts with the Blagojevich camp about fund-raising.
Three weeks after taking office in the US Senate, Burris suddenly discovered that his previous affadavit and testimony were “incomplete”. On January 5th, Burris submitted a sworn statement to the Illinois House panel investigating Blagojevich that he had no contacts at all with the now-removed governor before his appointment in late December. When he testified at the end of January, he amended that to include two other contacts with former Blagojevich aides Lon Monk and John Harris — but he never mentioned Blagojevich’s brother demanding a payment.Chris Dodd, Charles Rangel, Barney Frank, William Jefferson, Blagojevich... and now Burris. And the beat goes on...
There is no possibility that Burris simply “forgot” about such a demand. In the first place, that’s exactly what the House was investigating, a pay-for-play arrangement for the open Senate seat. In fact, one has to question why Burris himself didn’t report such a blatantly corrupt demand to state or federal authorities. He never paid the money, but the demand itself is explicitly illegal, and as a state lawmaker Burris had a higher responsibility than most to report the attempt.