# News It seems that Roland Burris committed perjury over his senate seat appointment

1. Feb 14, 2009

### signerror

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/15/us/15burris.html

Is anyone surprised? Will he be indicted, or maybe impeached by the senate?

2. Feb 14, 2009

### phreak

More than likely, nothing big will happen unless they prove that he actually raised some of the money asked of him. Also, it is unclear as to whether Burris was aware of the fact that this fundraising was to go toward bribe money. He could have just thought that Blagojevich was asking a fellow Democratic for financial assistance for his campaign. I'm sure it happens all the time in politics.

3. Feb 14, 2009

### HallsofIvy

The fact that he said something that was not true does not necessarily mean it was perjury. To prove prove perjury you would have to show that he had intentionally lied and until that is done there exist the possibility that he simply misspoke by accident.

4. Feb 14, 2009

### signerror

The point is he made false testimony under oath, in front of the impeachment committee. And about something very serious.

That's why I qualified with "it seems that".

5. Feb 14, 2009

### Skyhunter

I disagree. It does not seem that he committed perjury. It seems he misspoke.

The fact that he came forth after reading the transcript reinforces the perception that he misspoke.

6. Feb 14, 2009

### Proton Soup

i'm not sure it matters whether he did or not. i think certain people are going to do everything they can to unseat him so that they can insert Triple J.

7. Feb 15, 2009

Staff Emeritus
Apparently Sen. Burris' story has changed three times. He was specifically asked about conversations with Lon Monk and Rob (brother of the ex-governor) Blagojevich and initially denied any contact with them. (One conversation allegedly discussed both the senate appointment and a $10,000 donation to Gov. Blagojevich's campaign) When evidence of these conversations was made public, Sen. Burris'...um...memory was refreshed, and now he admits to have a conversation with them. Um...two...wait, make that three conversations. I couldn't say if it's perjury. However, if the Senator's memory needs that much prodding - he seems to only remember things after they are made public - perhaps he should see a doctor. 8. Feb 15, 2009 ### Astronuc Staff Emeritus Um - please provide the evidence - as in the transcript. What was the context of the questions and subsequent responses under oath to whichever Illinois or US Senate committee such testimony was given? If he had contact/conversations with Lon Monk and Rob Blagojevich and then denied it under oath, he committed perjury if he knew/remembered he did and lied about it. What if he forgot about a meeting that was last year or years ago? What if the meeting had nothing to do with nomination to Senate? One conversation allegedly discussed . . . . (the key word is allegedly). If Monk or Rod Blagojevich testify they did have contact, and did discuss some quid pro quo for the senate appointment, then it's up to the Congress to take appropriate action. 9. Feb 15, 2009 ### Vanadium 50 Staff Emeritus According to the Chicago Tribune, there were three meetings: one in October and two in November. Sen. Burris' latest position is that he was asked for a campaign contribution in meetings where the senate appointment was discussed (this is contrary to previous testimony) but that he refused. 10. Feb 17, 2009 ### Astronuc Staff Emeritus Burris acknowledges trying to raise money for gov. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090217/ap_on_go_co/burris_blagojevich [Broken] I think Burris needs to pack his bags and go home. Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017 11. Feb 17, 2009 ### Skyhunter I second that motion. Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017 12. Feb 17, 2009 ### LowlyPion I can't argue that. His response to the Illinois Senate at Blago's impeachment, was apparently intentionally misleading by his failure to specifically answer the question, and not only to answer, but to answer in a misleading way that he now reveals was seemingly crafted too cleverly by half. Too cleverly to the extent that I think intention must be attached. I figured him for a tragic figure from a Greek morality play, grasping at something that but for the contretemps of poor lost Blago could never have been his in the first place. It seems he has lived up to my estimation of him. He should seek out the dust bin of history at his earliest opportunity. But like Blago I figure he will twist and cling and clutch at his prize and probably won't be removed (though it could be a close one if he does survive). Then he will retire from office in 2 years to seek out the welcome shade of obscurity, as a new Democrat takes the party nomination. 13. Feb 17, 2009 ### Astronuc Staff Emeritus It's going to be interesting to look back in 3 or so decades (assuming I'm alive) and see how the history books treat this period. It all seems so surreal. I keep asking myself - "how much more stupid is this whole socio-politico-economic fiasco going to get?" I'd like to be around a century or two from now just to see what future generations make of us now. 14. Feb 17, 2009 ### LowlyPion Hopefully they won't see this period as the golden age - the blossom of the promise of technology and science that dramatically increased humankind productivity but wasn't balanced by thimble full of sense and resulted in decades of adjustment as it took a number of generations to come to grips with the limitations that our excess came to impose. I remain hopeful that the best years are ahead, and common sense will yet be acquired. 15. Feb 17, 2009 ### Vanadium 50 Staff Emeritus So now we're at story #4? 16. Feb 17, 2009 ### LowlyPion Here is his recent denial. It all seems crafted to play in South Side Chicago, but the intent to mislead seems carefully constructed, apparently with the idea that they could finesse the pre-seating in the Senate period and once in pull a play from the Blago play book and hang on. I'm guessing his re-electability is trashed though. But he can say he served in the Senate on his mausoleum. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecWFKIXGGR8 17. Feb 18, 2009 ### signerror 18. Feb 18, 2009 ### signerror 19. Feb 18, 2009 ### Vanadium 50 Staff Emeritus Did you see the film of his testimony? He looks even worse there - he had to check with his lawyer several times before answering the question with an answer which was, in the most favorable light to the senator, highly misleading. I wonder what Harry Reid is thinking now. 20. Feb 18, 2009 ### LowlyPion Harry Reid? I doubt he really cares so long as he can control his vote. And at this point Burris is owned by the Democrats. He has no political base. He has no constituency anymore with the departure of Blago - a dubious constituency of 1 to begin with. He has little prospect of being reelected. He's already a lame duck just a couple of weeks into serving. But worse than that if he crosses the Dems on any issue they can just convene the ethics committee and boot his behind back to being retired and planning his updated mausoleum. In short it looks to me like he is just totally owned. Politics rules out. The ones really calling for his departure are the Republicans and Fox News trying to stir up an issue to get indignant about. What else have they got after getting pummeled in the polls for mismanaging government and being reduced to such impotence that the only thing they can do now is whine about bi-partisanship and voting no because they think they have any actual power? You didn't hear these talking heads demanding that Ted Stevens give it up when he was caught orchestrating renovations to his house. 21. Feb 18, 2009 ### Vanadium 50 Staff Emeritus Well, Harry Reid made a big stink about ethics, and then accepted Burris (immediately after Burris, perhaps imprudently, said he would be a "reliable vote") and now it looks like Burris has more ethics problems. He's got to be feeling a little embarassed. As far as the "he may be a scoundrel, but he's our scoundrel" argument, I somehow suspect that they American people are tiring of this. If a vote for "change we can believe in" means that it's only a change in the beneficiaries of corruption, I suspect there will be quite a backlash. 22. Feb 18, 2009 ### signerror Yes, like the American "backlash" to Bob Ney (R-Ohio), and Randy Cunningham (R-CA), and "$90,000 wrapped in aluminum foil" William Jefferson (D-LA), and Tom Delay (R-TX), and Ted Stevens (R-CA), and George Ryan (gov R-IL), who was replaced with ""How can you replace one Ryan with another Ryan and call that change? You want change? Elect a guy named Blagojevich" Rod Blagojevich (gov D-IL), and his protege Roland Burris (D-IL), and perjurer Scooter Libby, and the entire Bush White House (R-Hades). The voters said "never again!", and they meant it.

(Incidentally, I remind you that the William Jefferson bribes never went to trial.)

Thankfully, we have "change we can believe in" Obama, who so far only had two nominees withdraw over criminal allegations (and neither involved bribery).

23. Feb 18, 2009

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
:roflcopters:

24. Feb 18, 2009

### LowlyPion

Oh he may well be embarrassed. But when you get down to it Reed is undoubtedly comforted by having his reliable vote. There are bigger fish yet to fry on the legislative front, than worrying about this yahoo's ethics.

I suspect that if his term was a full 6 years there would maybe be more angst towards having him replaced.

While I think that Burris has clearly misrepresented things, within the strict meaning of the definition as it would relate to fraud, by his failure to include all the information necessary to make his response not be misleading at the time, I'd have to say that he may be on a little sounder footing, legally speaking, by virtue of his voluntary filing of the supplemental disclosure that specifically relates this additional information.

Was it a smarmy dodge to say "I spoke with friends, yes." but not supply those details until now? Sure. Is it a violation of law within the context of the rules of the Illinois Senate Impeachment of Blogojevich that apparently permitted him to file supplemental clarifications? No, I am disappointed to think that he may be able to skate on the legal merit of the situation.

Hence I doubt he will be removed, though I also think unless he manages to distinguish himself with the voters of Illinois in the next 2 years, he won't be standing a chance of reelection either.

25. Feb 18, 2009

### LowlyPion

I don't see any felony allegations filed against either of those that withdrew.