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RUSH: There are two Senate seats up for grabs, and, of course, we know there’s controversy surrounding the Senate seat in Illinois being vacated by Obama, who, by the way, made two more cabinet appointments today. Tom Vilsack, the former governor of Iowa, is now going to be the secretary of agriculture, and Ken Salazar from Colorado, with whom we have had several run-ins this past year, I don’t even remember what about. Oh, yeah. He tried to block drilling oil in the great West. (interruption) Well, that may be a bit harsh, Mr. Snerdley, to say that he lied about it, but they’ve got all kinds of oil reserves and he’s doing his best to block it. Now he’s going to have easy access to blocking it as secretary of the interior. He’s leaving his Senate seat, so now we’ve got another Senate seat to be filled, this time by Democrat governor in Colorado. But the two Senate seats that, of course, are causing controversy, Obama’s seat in Illinois, and this Blagojevich thing, it just keeps surprising us each and every day, wonderfully so, ladies and gentlemen.

Now his lawyer’s out there saying, ‘What is all this caterwauling? He hasn’t done anything wrong,’ and in the strict legal sense, he hasn’t. They stepped in there, and they stopped the sale of the Senate seat, so there has been no felony committed. They’ve got him on wiretaps saying this or saying that, but nothing actually happened because they stepped in and stopped the investigation. They don’t have any money for a special election. They’re really tied up in the Illinois legislature because they want the guy to quit. He won’t quit. Now they’re talking about impeaching him. But then they gotta do a trial, and if they have a trial then they’ve got all kinds of things that might come out in the trial they don’t want anybody to know, and then they’re looking at a special election, and the reason they’re worried about a special election is that this controversy encompasses exclusively Democrats. So the special election might produce a Republican winner who would then occupy the Senate seat vacated by The Messiah, Barack Obama. And now they’re a little upset in various sectors of the black community in Illinois.

From the Chicago Sun-Times today: ‘Black Leaders See Senate Seat Being Hijacked.’ Now, I love that headline, ladies and gentlemen. Senate seat being hijacked, say black leaders. Well, okay, who exactly is hijacking it, then? That’s right, Democrats, if that’s what’s going on. Well, that’s another thing. They are acting like it is their property. This seat is their property. Once a Senate seat goes to a minority, an African-American, I guess the notion is that it shall remain so in perpetuity. Here is Laura Washington writing in the Chicago Sun-Times: ‘Bye bye, black Senate seat! The political blackbirds are singing a swan song for the hopes of keeping a US Senate seat in African-American hands. The Rod Blagojevich implosion may have dealt that cause a fatal blow. Last week’s stunning pay-to-play charges led to calls around the nation for a special election to choose President-elect Barack Obama’s successor. That possibility has provoked outrage among black community leaders and politicians. Not so fast, they are saying. Last month, the Concerned Clergy of Illinois–‘ have you ever heard of the Concerned Clergy of Illinois? Nor had I, ’til this story. ‘The Concerned Clergy of Illinois demanded that the governor appoint a ‘qualified’ African American ‘who can fill this vacancy –” Speaking of, did you know that Jesse Jackson Jr. now says he’s been informing to the FBI since 2002, six years? He must be one worthless informant.

Look at all the corruption that has been going on in that state and they haven’t gotten anybody on it? What a rotten informant this guy’s been. At any rate, more on that as the program unfolds today before your very eyes and ears. ‘The Concerned Clergy of Illinois demanded that the governor appoint a ‘qualified’ African American ‘who can fill this vacancy and who has the capacity to be re-elected when [Obama’s] term ends in 2010.’ The problem, as I wrote then, is that black leaders were at odds on who should get the nod. After the Blago bomb hit, US Rep. Bobby Rush of Chicago’s 1st Congressional District gave some big love to the beleaguered Senate wannabe, US Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. The minister’s group is solidly behind him. … In an interview on MSNBC, Rush added, ‘I think that we should have at least one African American in the United States Senate, and I think that African American should be Jesse Jackson Jr.” What is this sense of ownership? I told you that having an African-American president was not going to solve anything. It was only going to exacerbate it out there.

‘The Concerned Clergy, a cadre of several dozen prominent black ministers, are ‘appalled’ by the fallout of the sensational federal investigation. They see it as a thinly veiled attempt by white pols to hijack the seat, says Stephanie Gadlin, the coalition’s spokeswoman. … Illinois’ Powers That Be are hurtling headlong into election mode. The Legislature will convene today to hammer out legislation to mandate an election, no doubt in record time. The appointment option is fading fast,’ although Blago could still do it. He could still do it. Now, see, the rule of thumb is that nobody would accept it because of the cloud. Wrongo. I guarantee you if he nominated Jesse Jackson Jr. he’d swear himself in five minutes later. ‘White voters don’t and won’t accept the idea that America and Illinois need — and deserve — a black senator.’ This is from the story. ‘White voters don’t and won’t accept the idea that America and Illinois need — and deserve — a black senator.’ This is all about Obama’s seat.

Now, while that’s percolating, and that’s just part of what’s percolating, this is a new wrinkle now, is that the white Democrats in Illinois and Chicago are trying to hijack this seat away from blacks. Over in New York, the fur is really flying over this Caroline Kennedy presumption.

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