You’ve got to hand it to former IL Governor Rod Blagojevich. He’s the anti-Midas. Everything he touches turns to…not gold, anyway. His magical touch has once again appeared, and this time the touchee is the senator he appointed to replace Barack Obama, Roland Burris. Apparently, Blagos Magic Touch™ caused Sen. Burris to, uh, misremember things.
The governor’s brother, Rob Blagojevich, asked Burris three times to help with fundraising, according to a Feb. 4 affidavit the senator filed with state Representative Barbara Flynn Currie, who chaired the Illinois House panel that impeached Blagojevich.
Burris told the House panel on Jan. 8 that the governor hadn’t asked for money or favors in exchange for the Senate seat. In a letter accompanying the affidavit, Burris’s lawyer said the senator hadn’t been able to “fully respond” to questions.
He didn’t mean to give contradictory testimony. But it was all so confusing and difficult.
“While Senator Burris testified truthfully and to the best of his recollection before the Impeachment Committee, given the fluid nature of the questions and answers between the Senator and the committee, and based upon our subsequent review of the hearing transcripts, the Senator was unable to fully respond to several matters that were included in questions during his testimony,” lawyer Timothy Wright wrote in the Feb. 5 letter.
You see, he meant to tell the committee that Robert Blagojevich, the governor’s brother had asked him to do some, uh, fund-raising to the tune of $10,000, on three separate occasions, but he just wasn’t given a chance to testify to all these things fully. So, it’s really the committee’s fault, with their slipshod procedures and what not. That’s why he told the committee that he had not been asked for any fund-raising at all.
You’d think that a former state Attorney General would be able to negotiate the shoals of testimony, but I guess not.
Still, he told the committee that he had no contact with anyone connected to the governor in association with the appointment. And he specifically denied having been asked to raise any money. That’s a difference that would seem difficult to explain, but Sen. Burris is having a press conference today in which he will, presumably, clarify these matters to everyone’s satisfaction.
The press conference has started. “I was never inconsistent in my statements”.
He says he answered affirmative when asked if he’d had contact with Gov Blagojevich’s cronies, and provided Lon Monk’s name as an example, after which, the questioning moved on to another subject.
He says his testimonies are fully consistent.
The Chicago press corps is asking him some pretty tough questions. They don’t seem to be buying his schtick.
This should be interesting to follow.