Friday, January 9, 2009

Court: Signature not needed for Burris seating

The Illinois Supreme Court today rejected Roland Burris' effort to get the signature he needs to complete his appointment to the U.S. Senate.

The court's unanimous ruling tosses the issue back to Washington. Democratic U.S. Senate leaders, including Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, now will have to decide whether to hold firm to their insistence that Burris get a signature on his appointment form from Illinois Secretary  of State Jesse White before gaining admittance.

President-elect Barack Obama told Senate leadership this week that he wanted the Burris issue resolved quickly, putting pressure on Durbin and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). The two senators offered no immediate reaction today, but Durbin has scheduled a 3:30 p.m. news conference.

"This appointment meets the qualifications required by the U.S. Senate of all Gubernatorial appointees to fill vacated seats," Burris said in a statement after the ruling. "I am confident I have cooperated with all the requests of the U.S. Senate and I expect they will validate my credentials and seat me in a timely manner."

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