Harry Reid just held a news conference in which he continued to refuse to seat Roland Burris. Reid’s justifications are transparent and unjustifiable. Reid claims he is waiting for the Illinois Supreme Court to force Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White to sign the certification of Burris’ appointment, but that clearly is an after-the-fact pretext. Reid announced his refusal to seat Burris before White refused to sign the certification, and even White now takes the position that his signature is a mere formality.
Reid started his statement by pointing out what a good presentation Burris made in his meeting with Reid, how educated Burris is, and how serious Burris took the law:
“He presents himself very well. He’s very proud of his family,
got two Ph.D.s and two law degrees. And he talked about how
proud he was of everyone having those degrees.”
These comments were demeaning to Burris, and reminiscent of Joe Biden’s description of Barack Obama as “articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy.”
I have been against the playing of the race card in politics, but one has to wonder whether Reid would have taken so much time to review the educational achievements of a white appointee. Reid is not opposing Burris because Burris is black, but Reid did exhibit a condescending attitude, as if he were surprised that a black could be so educated. I didn’t want to go here, but Reid’s comments were what they were, and his attitude is what it is.