Roland Burris, President-elect Barack Obama’s appointed successor in the U.S. Senate, was turned away Tuesday when he appeared at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to take his seat, according to news reports.
Burris, who would replace Obama as the only black member of the U.S. Senate, announced the decision to deny him the seat as he stood before a large throng of reporters and cameras in the rain outside the Capitol building, according to The Associated Press.
Speaking just an hour before the convening of the 111th Congress Tuesday, Burris said he was looking at a host of options for getting the seat.
He said the secretary of the Senate rejected his credentials, and therefore he would not be allowed access to the floor, according to CNN.
Nancy Erickson, the secretary of the Senate, rejected Burris’ appointment on Monday because his certificate of appointment was missing the signature of Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, an aide to the secretary told CNN.
CNN also reported that: Rule 2 of the Standing Rules of the Senate states that the secretary of state must sign the certificate of election along with the governor.
Senate Democrats have said they would not seat Burris because he was appointed by Democratic Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, who is accused of scheming to sell the Senate seat.
Pictured above is Roland Burris.