Blago Approached Burris for Money Before Appointment
Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s brother, Rob, solicited campaign contributions from Sen. Roland Burris (D) in the period leading up to his appointment to the Senate, Burris acknowledged Saturday.
In an affidavit submitted last week to the Illinois House committee that presided over Blagojevich’s impeachment, Burris said for the first time that Blagojevich’s brother solicited up to $10,000 in three conversations before the appointment. Burris also said he also spoke with other members of Blagojevich’s inner circle during that time. Burris said he did not make any contributions.
The Chicago Sun-Times first reported on the affidavit on Saturday.
Burris’ statements are at odds with earlier testimony he provided before the same panel. In a sworn statement before the panel on Jan. 5, Burris said he had not spoken with Blagojevich or his staff before his appointment in December. He later testified that he spoken to Blagojevich’s chief of staff and now, according to the affidavit, acknowledges he spoke to three other members of Blagojevich’s staff.
Burris’ office did not immediately return a request for comment.
Illinois House Republicans are now reportedly calling for an investigation into Burris for perjury.
Burris appointment in late December caused controversy on Capitol Hill. Because he was currently facing corruption charges in part relating to the Senate seat, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) originally said he would not seat a Blagojevich appointee. Reid later relented and Burris was sworn in.
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