Sen. Durbin all but calls on Burris to resign

He won't do it, of course. He has a solid wall of African American support across the country and Burris knows it. Very soon now, he will blatantly play the race card, perhaps even mentioning the word "lynch" or some other code word for the man keeping him down.

The point is, he will do anything to stay in the senate while daring the Democrats to expel him.

Also predictably, they won't do that either. Pandering to their base is rule #1 in the Democratic party political playbook. But that probably won't prevent Illinois' senior senator Dick Durbin - a man probably feeling pretty much betrayed by Burris at this point - from hinting that it's time for Burris to leave:

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said today the political future of U.S. Sen. Roland Burris “is in question” amid growing concern about his contacts with ousted Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

The comments from Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, came hours after Burris, his Illinois colleague, pleaded with fellow politicians and Illinoisans to give him the benefit of the doubt.

But Durbin, who was traveling on official Senate business in Turkey, told the Tribune the daily revelations about what Burris did and who he talked to among Blagojevich insiders are a serious problem.

“I am troubled by this and I hope he will call in some advisers he trusts and gets some advice about what to do next,” Durbin said of Burris. “At this point, his future in the Senate seat is in question.”

In politicalese, Durbin is calling on Burris to resign without actually doing so. It's probably as far as he will go but if he had his druthers, I'm sure he'd like to personally escort the lying weasel to the airport and throw him on a plane home.

Durbin vouched for Burris with Reid and other Democrats who didn't want to seat anyone appointed by disgraced and now impeached governor Rod Blagojevich. He put his own reputation on the line and Burris has disgraced him.

Further, Burris has now made the 2010 election a mess for the Democrats in Illinois. It is expected that up to 10 prominent party leaders could be vying for the senate seat that Burris will either be forced to give up or be so damaged by these revelations that he won't stand a chance that November.

It gets worse. There will be enormous pressure on Democrats if Burris resigns to hold a special election rather than having the governor appoint another candidate. They will resist that pressure but it will play perfectly into Republican hands in the 2010 state and local elections. By supermajorities, the people in this state want an election. If the Democrats deny them one - and it is a virtual certainty they will - look for the GOP to make big gains in the statehouse and perhaps even in Congress.

But they don't dare ask Burris to step down. So Durbin is stuck doing his Kabuki dance of a statement around the issue while Burris - stubborn and secure in the knowledge that he's backed up by the African American community - will have to be dragged kicking and screaming out of the senate.



He won't do it, of course. He has a solid wall of African American support across the country and Burris knows it. Very soon now, he will blatantly play the race card, perhaps even mentioning the word "lynch" or some other code word for the man keeping him down.

The point is, he will do anything to stay in the senate while daring the Democrats to expel him.

Also predictably, they won't do that either. Pandering to their base is rule #1 in the Democratic party political playbook. But that probably won't prevent Illinois' senior senator Dick Durbin - a man probably feeling pretty much betrayed by Burris at this point - from hinting that it's time for Burris to leave:

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said today the political future of U.S. Sen. Roland Burris “is in question” amid growing concern about his contacts with ousted Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

The comments from Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, came hours after Burris, his Illinois colleague, pleaded with fellow politicians and Illinoisans to give him the benefit of the doubt.

But Durbin, who was traveling on official Senate business in Turkey, told the Tribune the daily revelations about what Burris did and who he talked to among Blagojevich insiders are a serious problem.

“I am troubled by this and I hope he will call in some advisers he trusts and gets some advice about what to do next,” Durbin said of Burris. “At this point, his future in the Senate seat is in question.”

In politicalese, Durbin is calling on Burris to resign without actually doing so. It's probably as far as he will go but if he had his druthers, I'm sure he'd like to personally escort the lying weasel to the airport and throw him on a plane home.

Durbin vouched for Burris with Reid and other Democrats who didn't want to seat anyone appointed by disgraced and now impeached governor Rod Blagojevich. He put his own reputation on the line and Burris has disgraced him.

Further, Burris has now made the 2010 election a mess for the Democrats in Illinois. It is expected that up to 10 prominent party leaders could be vying for the senate seat that Burris will either be forced to give up or be so damaged by these revelations that he won't stand a chance that November.

It gets worse. There will be enormous pressure on Democrats if Burris resigns to hold a special election rather than having the governor appoint another candidate. They will resist that pressure but it will play perfectly into Republican hands in the 2010 state and local elections. By supermajorities, the people in this state want an election. If the Democrats deny them one - and it is a virtual certainty they will - look for the GOP to make big gains in the statehouse and perhaps even in Congress.

But they don't dare ask Burris to step down. So Durbin is stuck doing his Kabuki dance of a statement around the issue while Burris - stubborn and secure in the knowledge that he's backed up by the African American community - will have to be dragged kicking and screaming out of the senate.