The Campaign Spot

Sun-Times: Burris Needs a Shove — from Dick Durbin!

The Chicago Sun-Times joins the Tribune in calling for Burris’s resignation. And since they know that’s not likely, they put pressure on another source:

Today, we’re calling on Burris to resign voluntarily, knowing fully well that’s like asking a Cubs fan to cheer for the White Sox at the Crosstown Classic.

Without a push, he will never do it. Wouldn’t look good on the tombstone.

So Sen. Burris needs a nudge.

And who better to give a nudge than the senator’s fellow elected officials? They have the power to make his continued life in politics miserable.

Some political leaders already are calling on Burris to resign, but it’s time for the real heavyweights to join in.

Sen. Dick Durbin, above all, needs to join the chorus. In plain and deliberate language, he must call on Burris to call it quits.

Durbin need not wait for the outcome of a Senate ethics investigation. There is no rush to judgment, as Burris claims. All the relevant facts are available.

Interesting to see the Sun-Times dumping the responsibility for cleaning up the mess in the lap of Durbin — who, to his credit, was the first to say after the Blago scandal that Obama’s replacement ought to be selected with a special election.

And equally interesting that the Sun-Times didn’t mention some other politician from Chicago who’s now in a prominent position who could, with one statement, all but assure Burris’s departure.

UPDATE: Reader Robert makes a legitimate point:

Maybe it is not a good idea for Obama to suggest that Burris resign? Even though Burris is technically one of Obama’s home-state senators, it seems to me that as a separation of powers argument, the executive branch ought not be meddling in the legislative branch that way. The Constitution is clear regarding who decides membership in the Senate.

I can see that point. On the other hand, it’s not like Obama actually has the power to remove Burris from the seat. Improper behavior is improper behavior, and that’s all Obama would have to say, that Burris — or the next equivalent of Larry Craig, or Mark Foley, or Gary Condit, or Duke Cunningham, or Ted Stevens, or Bob Packwood, or Tim Mahoney, or whoever — has behaved in a manner that warrants resignation.


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