Illinois has a new Senator. Days after the Senate leadership threatened to block Governor Rod Blagojevich’s appointee to fill Obama’s vacated seat and the Secretary of the Senate turned him away, Roland Burris was sworn in this afternoon. His Illinois colleague Dick Durbin, who had previously said that no one could take the seat till Blagojevich was removed from office, said today that he had been misinformed, and feels “awful” about the trouble Burris had getting in.
Senators and guests at the swearing-in gave Burris warm applause; the Washington Post‘s Ruth Marcus gave a raspberry: “Roland Burris, who represents the people of Illinois, after all, believes that it is ‘not really my purview’ to say if he thinks Blagojevich should resign? Just one more bit of evidence that he has no business being a senator.”