On Dec. 11, we asked that the Illinois General Assembly call for a special election to fill the senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama.
Our position was that the state was on the verge of bankruptcy, both financially and morally, and the only way to begin moving into a new phase of legitimate government in Illinois was to allow the people to elect the replacement.
The alternative was to allow then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich to appoint the replacement, a move we feared would be rife with backroom deals and corrupt practicesâ€”and our fears have been proven real.
The Illinois legislature demonstrated a lack of political will and courage and decided not to decide, giving Blagojevich the opportunity to create yet another cloud over the state.
It only took the appointee, Roland Burris, about a month to create a controversy of corruption and bring even more shame to Illinois and its politics.
When interviewed under oath by the state House panel that recommended the impeachment of Blagojevich, Burris testified that he could recall speaking to just one aide of the governor and did not discuss raising funds for him.
Then, Burris filed an affidavit changing his story, saying he was contacted by multiple people from Blagojevichâ€™s office, and was asked by Blagojevichâ€™s brother to raise funds for him.
Then, following a Democratic dinner in Peoria, Ill., on Monday, he spoke with reporters. According to a partially edited transcript of Burrisâ€™s exchange with reporters, published online by the Chicago Tribune, Burris admitted not only to having had many more conversations with people representing the governor, he also said he tried to raise funds for him based on one of those conversations.
In effect, what has transpired is that Burris was less-than-truthful with the Illinois legislature, less-than-truthful in his filed affidavits, and then has the gall to ask why the public is questioning his honesty.
Roland Burris should resign, and the Illinois public should begin letting their feelings be known now. Call his Chicago Senate Office at (312) 886-3506, or e-mail him at Senator_RolandBurris@Burris.Senate.Gov, and politely demand his resignation.
He represents us yet no one voted for him, and the only reason he is in office is due to an appointment made by a now-impeached governor and a state legislature unwilling to stand on principle.
The inability to be forthcoming and truthful, and the lack of desire to act on behalf of the public good, has become such an ingrained part of Illinois politics that it is the publicâ€™s responsibility to right the ship. It is not enough to merely vote on election day and then wait years until the next opportunity to step into the voting booth.
The public must contact their representatives and demand a change in the way government functions, and if that change does not happen, then members of the public must be prepared to step up and throw the corrupt out of office by demanding their resignations or defeating them on election day. If that means running yourself, then get out the campaign signs, get your petitions ready, and run.
When will enough be enough? It is time for the public to take their state back.
An Elburn Village Note in the Feb. 12 issue of the Elburn Herald incorrectly stated that under the current municipal garbage ordinance, residents must remove the empty trash receptacles from the curb by 11 a.m. the day of pickup. The deadline for removing garbage containers from the curb is 11 p.m. the day of pickup.
A photo on page 3 of the Feb. 12 Progress Edition was misidentified. The photo labelled Julie Bauman of Maple Park is actually Janelle Schuppner of Kaneville.
The Elburn Herald regrets the errors.
The Elburn Herald wants its news reports to be fair and accurate. If you know of an error, please contact:
Ryan Wells, Editor
123 N. Main St.,
Elburn, IL 60119
phone (630) 365-6446
fax: (630) 365-2251