Top Senate Dems Continue to Reject Burris

Amanda Carpenter
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Posted: Jan 04, 2009 10:44 AM
Democratic leadership had their talking points in order regarding the Burris appointment for the Sunday morning shows.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Blagojevich is "obviously corrupt" and that Burris is "tainted," although the Governor has not yet been found guilty of anything on Meet the Press this morning.

"It's not the person who has been appointed, it's the appointee," Reid said, attempting to dismiss criticisms that Burris was being unfairly attacked. The Leader also maintained the Senate's right to determine its membership and said, "there is a cloud over Blagojevich and there is a cloud under the state of Illinois. The state doesn't have a vote."

(Reid also denied having ANY conversations with Blagojevich about the rejection of Reps. Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson, Jr. as possible appointments to the seat. "He's [Blagojevich] making it up," Reid said repeatedly.)

Meanwhile, the Senate's number two Democrat and Illinois senior senator unleashed a new talking point regarding the appointment. On ABC's "This Week" Sen. Dick Durbin (D.) conceded that disgraced Governor Rod Blagojevich has the "state constitutional authority" to appoint Roland Burris to fill Barack Obama's senate seat. On the other hand, Durbin maintained that the "Senate has the U.S. constitutional responsibility to decide if Burris was chosen in a proper manner."

Unrelated update: MTP's David Gregory asked some good "holding them accountable" type questions by bringing up Reid's previous statements about the Iraq war and President Bush.

Reid mostly refused to say he was wrong by declaring the war a "failure" in 2007, but reaffirmed negative feelings about Bush. Gregory asked Reid if he regretted calling President Bush a "liar" and a "loser" at various points in time. Reid said "no" by explaining that "I am who I am."