VACANCIES in the U.S. Senate -- in any elective office, for that matter -- should be filled by special election. Voters, not self-interested politicians trying to game the process for their own benefit, should decide who will represent the electorate in Washington. Need convincing? Look at the way three seats have been filled since the November
For sale in Illinois: Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) knew he had something of value and is accused of wanting to extract the best price for it. Federal prosecutors arrested him for allegedly trying to sell, trade or barter his selection of the person to fill President Obama's vacated Senate seat for a Cabinet post, a high-paying job for himself or his wife, or for fundraising help in an upcoming campaign. Democratic leaders initially responded with promises to pass a special-election law, then backed away amid fears that a Republican would win the seat. A tainted Mr. Blagojevich then defied the president-elect and the entire Democratic Senate caucus to appoint former Illinois state attorney general Roland W. Burris, who was seated after the embarrassing spectacle of being banished to the rain by Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (Nev.).