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Days after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) insisted that no one appointed by embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich...

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Brief of the Week January 12

Days after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) insisted that no one appointed by embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich…

THE BURRIS CAVE: Days after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) insisted that no one appointed by embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich would ever be seated in the U.S. Senate, Reid and other Democratic senators began to come around last week and set the stage for Roland Burris to assume the Senate seat of Barack Obama. Along with employing personal charm in meetings with Reid and his colleagues, former Illinois Atty. Gen. Roland Burris also demonstrated that he knows how to play hard-ball in the style of the Chicago Democratic machine he and Obama came up through. First, his supporters trotted out Rep. Bobby Rush (D.-Ill.), a onetime Black Panther who likened Reid and other senators to George Wallace and notorious Birmingham Police Chief Bull Connor for keeping the 71-year-old Burris from becoming the lone African-American in the Senate. Then the Congressional Black Caucus (which includes 41 Democrats) voted unanimously to back Burris’ claim to the seat. On the day that new lawmakers were sworn in, Obama — who had said two weeks ago that Senate Democrats “cannot accept an appointment made by a governor who is accused of selling this very Senate seat” — also caved and told reporters that seating Burris was “a Senate matter” and he would work with Burris if he was seated. At this point, Reid has said that if Burris testifies there was no impropriety in his appointment and the Illinoisan gets a pass from the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, he will be seated. As for the suggestion from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D.-Calif.) that he promise not to run in 2010 if seated, Burris, shunted it aside by telling reporters: “Let me get my Senate legs under me and get in and raise some money to pay for all this stuff we’ve been doing and figure out that once we get in and get settled and learn where the bathrooms are.” (Easy: Each senator’s office has one.)

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John Gizzi has come to be known as â??the man who knows everyone in Washingtonâ? and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on whatâ??s going on in the nationâ??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as â??Gizzi on Politicsâ? and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of â??Gizziâ??s America,â? video interviews that appear on HumanEvents.com. Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. Johnâ??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com

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