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The [Wednesday] Papers

Oh crap, everything's all screwed up today. Here's a column-in-progress in reverse order.

BREAKING: Conflicting reports on the Senate agreeing to seat Burris. More to come.

In the meantime, check out these wonderful offerings --->>>

UPDATE: 10:06 A.M.: Harry Reid's office is denying an AP report that Senate leaders have agreed to seat Burris.

Meanwhile, President-Elect Barack Obama just said "I know Roland Burris. I think he is a fine public servant."


One option being discussed is that Burris would get the seat in exchange for agreeing not to run for re-election in 2010. How about Burris agreeing to hold the seat only until we get a new governor?

FOX News correspondent repeating the national media narrative about Burris: "He has a spotless reputation, he's never been tainted . . . he's very well thought of . . . "

Again, no. He tried to kill an innocent man once.

Feinstein's Folly
"He is very well-respected," Dianne Feinstein says.

By himself. But by who else?

Quick Start
"The Burris team [that went to Capitol Hill] consisted of three attorneys, four advisers, a consultant and an intern," Lynn Sweet reports.

He already has an intern? He doesn't even have a chief of staff yet!

Where's Obama?
"It's time for President-elect Barack Obama to get off the sidelines and try to talk some sense to Roland Burris - or if that's beneath him at this point, find somebody else who can," Mark Brown writes.

Hello? Does anything you've ever seen from Barack Obama indicate he would be remotely interested in doing this?

You might as well say it's time he came clean about Tony Rezko.

Court Snort
Doesn't this fiasco prove that Lisa Madigan was right? After all, Gov. Rod Blagojevich's appointment of Roland Burris to the U.S. Senate is technically legal, but we all know in our gut that it isn't right. How do we square those notions?

That's what Madigan was getting at in her attempt to remove Blagojevich from office because he was unable to perform his duties. The Burris appointment is a perfect example of the inability of the governor to make decisions with any degree of credibility. Madigan's legal maneuver argued that Blagojevich's standing fell under the "other disability" described in the law allowing for a governor to be removed.

The Illinois Supreme Court never said why it rejected Madigan's case, but I'd sure like to know what its definition of "other disability" is - and why Blagojevich doesn't qualify.


As Jeffrey Toobin said once again on CNN, "The governor is out on bail. When you are charged with a crime and out on bail, you lose certain privileges."

You would think appointing a U.S. Senator would be one of them.

The New York Way
If only Burris had to fill out a questionnaire like this.

UPDATE: 11:12 A.M.: "Burris' Status Still In Flux."

It Was Destiny
"Denver Post Removes 'The Lord' From Burris Story."

UPDATE: 11:26 A.M.: Now posted at "Roland Rolls 'Em."

Coffee Craze
"One Chicago Public Schools manager must have really been jonesing for a cup of coffee when officials say she spent nearly $70,000 of the district's money to buy 30 cappuccino/espresso machines for a high school program," the Tribune reports.

"But five months after the machines were purchased, 22 remained unopened, one disappeared and three were being used at two schools - though not in the culinary arts program for which they were intended, the district's inspector general said Tuesday."

The Sun-Times put it this way: "Chicago Public Schools' Cappuccino Bill: $67,000."

Daley History!
The mayor accidentally spoke with candor regarding the news that 5 percent of Chicago Public Schools teachers have earned "master's teacher" status, a much better rate than in L.A. and New York: "If we're leading the way, God help the rest of the country. I feel sorry for them. You wonder what has happened to public education in the rest of those cities."

Master Commenter
Mudcat12 in the Sun-Times: "Daley should impose on Mother Nature a one-cent tax on every snowflake that falls."

The truth is that Blago could have appointed Bozo the Clown and it would have been legal. But would the Senate have been compelled to seat Bozo? Again, this is why Lisa Madigan was right.

Beachwood Brain Twister
If forced to choose at gunpoint, would you seat Roland Burris in the U.S. Senate or watch Taylor Hicks in Grease? Please explain.

Just Like Being There


The Beachwood Tip Line: Every which way plus loose.


Posted on January 7, 2009

MUSIC - Holiday Hullabaloo.
POLITICS - Bank Profits Soaring.
SPORTS - Chicago vs. Michigan, 1903.

BOOKS - Dia De Los Muertos Stories.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: West Town Blues.

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