Report: Burris won't run again

Annoucement expected Friday
July 10, 2009 9:30:20 AM PDT
Roland Burris is expected to announce on Friday that he will not run for a full term in the U.S. Senate. But word of his decision leaked on Thursday. For 30 years, Roland Burris has been part of Illinois' political landscape. But the day former Governor Rod Blagojevich appointed Burris to fill President Obama's vacated Senate seat - triggered a chain of political events.

"The tragedy is that his legacy will be tied with Rod Blagojevich. That's not necessarily fair, but that's just a fact of life," said Thom Serafin, political analyst.

Now, after six months in office, Burris - it seems - will not run for the U.S. Senate seat.

"The decision to run or not to run is a personal decision based on his feelings and his family's feelings," said Delmarie Cobb, political consultant.

Controversy started on Day 1 when Burris went to Capitol Hill in January but was not sworn in. It took 10 days before the former vice president administered the oath.

That same month, Burris testified before an Illinois House Impeachment committee. He denied any wrong-doing while pursuing the senate seat and, weeks later, pleaded with the public.

"You know me. You know the real Roland. I am the real Roland," said Sen. Roland Burris, (D) Illinois.

In the end, a Sangamon County prosecutor did not charge Burris with perjury. But there were questions and in the end, political analysts say that certainly impacted his fundraising.

"I know that because of the possibility of perjury charges being filed that was something that hurt fundraising because people want to know, are you going to have criminal charges filed against you," said Cobb.

Burris was not charged downstate.

Names to watch for in the U.S Senate race include State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, Congressman Mark Kirk and Chicago Urban League president Cheryle Jackson.

Burris is expected to make his announcement Friday at 2 p.m.


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