CHICAGO - Embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich yesterday appointed former state Attorney General Roland Burris to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

State and national Democratic leaders, including Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, immediately said they would try to block the appointment, which comes three weeks after federal authorities arrested Blagojevich on criminal corruption charges that included allegations he tried to auction off the Senate seat for personal gain.

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