[Guest post by DRJ]
The Politico reports the Illinois Secretary of State signed a statement affirming the appointment of Roland Burris as Senator replacing Barack Obama. The action followed today’s decision by the Illinois Supreme Court holding that no further action (other than the registration of the appointment by the Secretary of State, an act that occurred December 31, 2008) was required to validate Blagojevich’s appointment of Burris:
“Under the Secretary of State Act, the Secretary’s sole
responsibility was to register the appointment (15 ILCS 305/5(2)
(West 2006)), which he did. No further action is required by the
Secretary of State or any other official to make the Governor’s
appointment of Roland Burris to the United States Senate valid under Illinois law.”
Thus, the Illinois Supreme Court denied Burris’ request for mandamus — that is, Burris’ request for an order directing the Secretary of State to certify his appointment — but Burris will likely prevail anyway because the Court held certification isn’t required to make the appointment valid.
Bottom line: The Senate may still claim certification is required under its rules but I doubt it will. If so, Burris could be seated next week.
UPDATE: I’ve changed the title to make it clear that, in accordance with the Illinois Supreme Court’s decision, the Secretary of State “affirmed” Burris’ appointment but did not certify it.