It’s another busy day for me, but I wanted to start an open thread for those of you keeping an eye on what’s happening in the Senate today, as Roland Burris has insisted he will try and enter onto the Senate floor as the junior Senator from Illinois:
WASHINGTON, Jan. 6 (UPI) — Former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris plans to try to enter the U.S. Senate chamber Tuesday to be sworn in with the other new senators.
Senate Democratic leaders said they will not allow the 71-year-old Burris to be seated because he was appointed by Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to fill the Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama. Leaders say his appointment is tainted because, among other things, Blagojevich was accused by federal prosecutors of trying to sell Obama’s seat to the highest bidder.
Both sides are determined to hold their ground, and the stand-off is expected to be somewhat staged, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Burris said his staff let his intentions be known to Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Terrance Gainer, one-time director of the Illinois State Police, who knows Burris.
“We will only go as far as the sergeant-at-arms permits us to go,” Burris said. “We will then retreat and meet with our legal team.”
If you’re able to watch the goings on on CSPAN (or wherever) today, please post in the comments what happens. Michelle Malkin will probably liveblog events as well.
Should be interesting, especially if Franken shows up as well.
I’ll check back in when I can.
Update – 10:57 AM: Burris arrived on Capitol Hill this morning. Here’s the latest:
WASHINGTON – Barack Obama’s appointed successor is heading to the Senate to be sworn in as a member of the 111th Congress, but it isn’t clear whether he’ll get to take the oath of office.
That wasn’t stopping Roland Burris, who was in tense negotiations at mid-morning Tuesday with Senate Sergeant at Arms Terrance Gainer.
Burris arrived on Capitol Hill in late morning and was escorted to the secretary of the Senate’s office — but no further. He also was expected to hold a news conference.
Fox will be carrying it live. Click here to watch.
Oh – and Franken is not in DC today.
Update 2 – 11:10 AM: MSNBC has this blaring across the top of their website: “BREAKING NEWS: Secretary of the Senate turns away Roland Burris, won’t let him be seated” (LINK).