CHICAGO – Illinois Democratic U.S. Sen. Roland Burris, his political prospects and personal legacy weakened by controversy, is expected to announce today he will not seek election to the seat he was appointed to by then-Illinois-Gov. Rod Blagojevich after Blagojevich’s arrest, sources close to Burris said.
The decision by Burris, 71, is an acknowledgment that prospects of mounting a multimillion dollar fundraising effort for a high-profile statewide race are dubious in the face of widespread public criticism over how he got the job. Almost two months after his appointment, a Chicago Tribune poll found only 37 percent of voters wanted Burris to run. As of the spring, he had raised $845 with more than $111,000 in debt, a campaign filing showed.
Burris will finish out his term, which expires in January 2011.