Who would take Obama's Senate seat?

August 28, 2008 4:45:32 PM PDT
The job isn't vacant, but already Illinois lawmakers are weighing in on who might take over Senator Barack Obama's U.S. Senate seat. By law, that seat would be appointed by Governor Rod Blagojevich.

"I've done nothing more than just state that I'd be honored and pleased if I were chosen. That would be great, obviously. But it also is pretty great to be close to the president of the United States and in the House of Representatives," said Illinois Rep. Jan Schakowsky, (D) Evanston

"I have thought about it. I am seriously considering it. But, the first thing is- the seat isn't vacant," said Rep. Luis Gutierrez, (D) Chicago

"I wouldn't say 'no' if asked by the governor. But ultimately that's a decision by the governor. I've served in Congress for more than 14 years. I've only missed two votes. I was in Congress before Jan Schakowsky and Rahm Emanuel," said Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., (D) Chicago

The sentimental favorite is probably Ill. Dept. of Veteran Affairs director National Guard Captain Tammy Duckworth, who lost both of her legs in Iraq.

But Illinois Senate President Emil Jones is talking up the man who took up Obama's seat in the Illinois Senate, South Side lawyer Kwame Raoul.

"He's a fine young man. He's a good senator. That's all I said," said Sen. Pres. Emil Jones, (D) Chicago

"Admittedly, it makes me nervous. There's a long pecking order before you get down to a guy in the Illinois State Senate. Then again, the guy there now is a guy who came directly from the Illinois State Senate," said State Sen. Kwame Raoul, (D) Chicago

Governor Blagojevich said talking about a possible appointment is premature and bad luck before Obama wins.

"There is no first choice, there is no choice. Barack looks good, like he could be the president, we're hopeful, but like baseball, I'm not chancing anything," said Gov. Blagojevich, (D) Illinois


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