From our friend of the blog R. Thelonious
Caveat, my political prognostication batting average is somewhere in the send him down to the coal miner minor league.
But you can take this to the bank.
The next Senator from Illinois will be Roland Burriss.
The Democratic Caucus has stated emphatically and unanimously that Blagojevich should not appoint. Blago was undeterred; apparently, he did not see Harry Reid's rippling muscles -- they must not have been visible from behind the ear-to-ear grinning Joe Lieberman still beaming from coming out unscathed after an election season where he called President-Elect Obama a Marxist, terrorist-sympathizer and campaigned actively against sitting Democratic Senators.
The legal options available to prevent the Democrats from seating Burriss are tenuous; at best they are an opportunity for procedural delay and to stir up some bad blood for when Burriss eventually gets a seat. Although the latter effect likely will not actually come to pass. Have you noticed that not a single Congressperson has chastised Burriss for accepting the appointment? Back channels are now open.
This is where the rubber meets the road. Everyone has chimed in to say the Burriss is a good guy, but they just can't seat him because Blago is tainted. I ask you -- who voluntarily gets in bed with a tainted politician? Who (other than Lieberman) willingly participates in the process when the Senate Democrats have indicated their collective will?
The Democratic Senators will make lofty pronouncements about integrity of the process, but it is all smoke and mirrors. The Black Congressional Caucus is already circling the wagons. Rush has warned us not to "hang or lynch" Burriss and points out that there are no African-Americans in the Senate now.
At the end of the day, they will proclaim that either their hands are tied, or worse when the PR machine starts to do its damage, that it is the will of the people that Burriss be accepted, and we will all once again ask ourselves is there honor in politics. We will certainly know that politicians protect one another.
The only open question is will Caroline Kennedy succeed to the throne?
Update: The Senate has not agreed to seat Roland Burris as previously reported. It seems likely it is about to happen, however.