BURRIS CONCEDES BLAGO FUNDRAISING EFFORT…. Part of Sen. Roland Burris’ (D-Ill.) problem is the way in which his story has changed more than once. Initially, the newly-appointed senator said he hadn’t spoken to Blagojevich or his aides about the Senate seat. Burris later said he’d been asked to help Blagojevich raise funds while under consideration for the Senate seat, but he declined.
Now, in what I believe is the fourth version of events, Burris has made yet another confession.
U.S. Sen. Roland Burris has acknowledged he sought to raise campaign funds for then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich at the request of the governor’s brother at the same time he was making a pitch to be appointed to the Senate seat previously held by President Barack Obama.
Burris’ latest comments in Peoria Monday night were the first time he has publicly said he was actively trying to raise money for Blagojevich. Previously Burris has left the impression that he always balked at the issue of raising money for the governor because of his interest in the Senate appointment.
In comments to reporters after appearing at a Democratic dinner, the senator several times contradicted his latest under-oath affidavit that he quietly filed with the Illinois House impeachment panel earlier this month. That affidavit was itself an attempt to clean up his live, sworn testimony to the panel Jan. 8, when he omitted his contacts with several Blagojevich insiders.
So, to review, Roland Burris was pushing to be appointed to the Senate. At the same time, he sought to raise money for the governor, a truth that’s at odds with previous claims. He also spoke to the governor’s brother and gubernatorial aides about the vacant seat and Blagojevich fundraising, a truth that also contradicts previous claims.
Perhaps now would be a good time for Burris to think about spending more time with his family.
It’s worth noting that Burris sought to raise money for Blagojevich, but didn’t actually deliver. The senator worked on organizing a fundraiser on the former governor’s behalf, but the event fell apart when donors said they weren’t interested. As recently as the weekend, Burris said he “did not donate or help raise a single dollar” for the impeached governor, which might technically be true — he didn’t “help raise a single dollar,” but he tried to — but is obviously misleading.
Of course, Burris suggested he wouldn’t even think about raising money for Blagojevich while under consideration for the Senate. He apparently only reached this conclusion after his organized fundraiser fell through.
And here I thought this mess couldn’t get more ridiculous.