Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Another take

Over the weekend, I suggested that the Senate should seat Roland Burris as the junior senator from Illinois. Yesterday, a friend pointed me to an article in Slate by Akhil Reed Amar and Josh Chafetz, from Yale and Cornell Law Schools respectively, making the case for the Senate's right to keep Burris out.

I'm not sure that I'm convinced that the Senate should keep Burris out, but I find the following reasoning in the article to be persuasive (although perhaps not completely) of the power to do so:
But imagine if Burris had won election only because other candidates were wrongly and corruptly kept off the ballot. Surely the Senate could properly deem this an invalid election. Similarly, it now seems apparent that there were candidates that Blagojevich refused to consider for improper reasons—because one refused to "pay to play" early on, or because another is at the center of the impending criminal case against the governor. With the appointments process so inherently and irremediably tainted, the Senate may properly decide that nothing good can come from a Blagojevich appointment.
(Etymological question: Should we say that an article appears in and online publication like Slate, or on it?)

1 comment:

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper said...


What would you say about finding a part of a piece if you were reading something off line?

Certainly not "off".

I think the word "in" refers to the body of the message, and something is found "in" the message, perhaps more correctly,"within".

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I think Burris should be seated. Blago is still only accused of stuff and is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and still has the right and obligation to appoint someone to the seat. And Burris is not unqualified.

I also agree with you that Franken should not be seated until the court cases have been adjudicated.