WASHINGTON — The White House on Friday called on embattled Illinois Sen. Roland Burris to take the weekend to think about his future.
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs would not go so far as to call on Burris to resign from the Senate, as Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn did on Friday. Nor would Gibbs say that Burris has lied about the circumstances surrounding his appointment to the seat, previously held by President Barack Obama.
But Gibbs said Burris needs to “come up with an explanation that satisfies” questions about the conflicting statements he has made. Gibbs said Obama supports “an investigation that would get some full story out.”
Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed Burris to the seat despite a scandal over whether the state leader tried to sell the job for campaign cash or a plum post for himself. Blagojevich was later impeached and removed from office.
Burris now faces accusations that he lied to an Illinois House committee in January when he testified that he hadn’t had contact with key Blagojevich staffers or offered anything in return for the seat.
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