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January 02, 2009

Senate Dems May Physically Bar Burris From Entering Senate;
Plus: Update on Burris' Attempt to Execute an Innocent Man

A low-tech lynching:

Senate Democratic leaders think Roland Burris, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's pick to fill President-elect Barack Obama's vacant Senate seat, will likely show up on Capitol Hill Tuesday for the opening day of Congress, according to a Democratic aide familiar with Senate Democratic leaders' plans.

They have prepared a contingency plan in case he does, the aide added.

Burris will not be allowed on the Senate floor, according to this aide and a Senate Democratic leadership aide.


The aide familiar with Senate Democratic leaders' plans said if Burris tries to enter the Senate chamber, the Senate doorkeeper will stop Burris. If Burris were to persist, either trying to force his way onto the Senate floor or refusing to leave and causing a scene, U.S. Capitol Police would stop him, said the aide.


"They (police) probably won't arrest him" but they would call the sergeant-at-arms," the aide said.

When asked about what would happen if he shows up and tries to be seated, Burris told the Chicago Tribune that he's, "not going to create a scene in Washington." He added, "We hope it's negotiated out prior to my going to Washington."

Delicious. Democrats calling the cops on a brown person merely attempting to exercise his political rights. Seems like old times.


...


Rachel, who sure sounds like she knows what she's talking about, writes:

I'm not sure of the legal rules for this, but Rolando Cruz was somebody who arguably "deserved" the death penalty, even if he didn't actually kill anybody. He wasn't an innocent victim picked out by prosecutors. Instead, they had a reward for information about the murder. Rolando Cruz wanted money really bad, and so knowingly made up false information in order to get the reward. However, he accidentally made up some information close to the actual facts, and so the detectives involved decided he was the murderer, and then framed him.

Legally, all he did was provide a false statement to the police, and didn't deserve much punishment. Morally, I couldn't care less about executing somebody who interferred with a murder investigation and tortured the family just for money.

That's interesting context, and sure, this guy is a piece of shit, but prosecutors are not supposed to convict and seek the death penalty against someone just because it's 1) easiest to get a conviction against this guy and 2) he's a piece of shit. The death penalty for a false statement is a pretty steep sentence, and even I, an Evil Murderous Republican Fascist, finds that a bit disproportionate.

Not to mention that a prosecutor isn't supposed to be interested in convictions per se, but in justice, in actually convicting the guilty.

There is also that little matter of the actual rapist/killer going free because Burris was hellbent to put the wrong man to death.

There wasn't just doubt that this guy was innocent. There was serious evidence, well-nigh conclusive, he was innocent. Lead detectives and chief prosecutors do not resign willy-nilly over a few incongruent facts. They not only knew, based on DNA, that Cruz was innocent, but that another man was guilty.


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posted by Ace at 11:26 AM

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