For all that Obama has been winning praise for his relatively smooth transition (okay, Richardson and Panetta aside), Dems must not be loving the side show Blagojevich has created. In fact, as one observer put it to me, “the clowns have taken over the circus — all three rings of it.”
Today’s spectacle of Burris being turned away by Secretary of the Senate Nancy Erickson, a Reid appointee, was just ugly on a lot of levels. Here’s this frail looking 71-year-old little guy who, in a scene reminiscent of a lot of Civil Rights scuffles, basically gets shown the door in the Senate for nothing that he’s done wrong. “The only guy laughing is Blagojevich, who knew exactly what he was doing when he nominated Burris and gave a middle-finger salute to the party that had turned on him,” e-mailed an astounded Larry Sabato, a political science professor at the University of Virginia, who plans on including the scene in his upcoming book, “Feeding Frenzy.”
There’s little upside here and the situation isn’t going away — or out of the headlines — any time soon. Burris tomorrow will meet with Reid, an encounter that is bound to look much like today’s scrum. His lawyers today said they are exploring all options, including filing suit in District Court — which would be in addition to their request to the Illinois Supreme Court to force Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White to certify Burris. If one man can change the world, one man — Blagojevich — can screw it up.