Unless He Resigns, Senate Likely Stuck With Burris

The embattled Senator, though lacking support, pledges to dig in and fight
By Clay Dillow,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 19, 2009 8:57 AM CST
Senator Roland Burris, D-Ill. speaks during a press conference in Chicago, Sunday, Feb. 15, 2009.   (AP Photo/David Banks)
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(Newser) – Whatever problems Roland Burris had being seated in the Senate, they pale in comparison to the problems the Senate will have getting rid of him, the Los Angeles Times reports. Expulsion from the Senate requires a two-thirds vote; the last senators to be formally booted were alleged rebel supporters during the Civil War. "It's a collegial body that doesn't like to police its members," the Senate’s associate historian says.

But Burris, who was appointed by now-ousted Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, may not receive the Senate’s goodwill, having arrived under a cloud of suspicion—and only recently at that. Politico reports that Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin bluntly told the Chicago Tribune "his future in the Senate seat is in question," reflective of Burris' lack of Democratic support. But unless he tenders his resignation, Burris' future may be in question until the end of his term.