Blagojevich pick to be given few privileges - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Blagojevich pick to be given few privileges

Associated Press - January 2, 2009 5:03 PM ET

WASHINGTON (AP) - Democratic leaders are taking steps to make it clear that Roland Burris won't be welcomed as Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's choice to succeed Barack Obama in the Senate.

Democrats plan to grant few if any privileges next week to Burris, even if he arrives on Capitol Hill with the right credentials.

Democrats have been busily charting out the choreography for Burris' arrival, conscious of the racial sensitivity involved with blocking Burris from becoming the Senate's only black member.

Officials say the only way Burris will be allowed on the Senate floor is if he possesses a certification of appointment signed personally by Blagojevich and Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White. Burris would then be treated as a senator-elect, which by tradition means he'll be allowed on the Senate floor without voting or speaking privileges -- and he wouldn't be granted a desk.

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