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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Blagojevich stuff

Updated to add: Oh, I almost forgot the main reason I was going to do this post. I keep seeing unofficial blog comments indicating Blagojevich's defense team is staying at the Governor's Mansion while in Springfield. But, I haven't seen official reports confirming this. Or, I missed them. In any event, I'm a little more than half-tempted to stake out the governor's mansion tomorrow night to see if anyone shows up early for Monday's hearings.

[End of update.]

The Chicago Daily Observer has an informative Historical Perspective on Senatorial Appointments in Illinois. Included are such familiar names as Richard Ogilvie and Everett Dirksen, among others:

Dirksen, born in 1896, was a chain-smoker who was in ill health. He was running for re-election in 1968 to his fourth term. Political insiders knew he would win, but doubted that he would complete his term (through 1974). So Smith and Ogilvie cut a deal: Smith endorsed Ogilvie, with the quid pro quo being that if Ogilvie won the governorship, and if Dirksen died during Ogilvie’s term, then Smith would get the Senate appointment.
Dirksen died of complications from lung cancer on Sept. 7, 1969. Ogilvie kept his word, Smith got his payback, and Smith served in Washington for 13 months. In 1970, Smith was defeated by Democrat Adlai Stevenson III.
If Blagojevich wanted to emulate Ogilvie, and do a payback, not a payoff, then he should appoint the man who essentially made him governor - namely: Alderman Dick Mell (33rd), his father-in-law.

Fascinating. Read the entire article.

He speaks! AP: Governor: I'm fighting for people of Illinois:

Gov. Rod Blagojevich said Friday that if what he’s done as Illinois governor is an impeachable offense, he’s living on the “wrong planet” and is in the “wrong place.”
Speaking to a WLS-TV reporter outside a Chicago law office, the governor said he was hired to fight for the people of Illinois and that’s what he’s been doing.
“If somehow that’s impeachable, then I’m on the wrong planet and I’m living in the wrong place,” Blagojevich said.

Wrong planet, wrong place? Definitely.

Maybe the governor can explain exactly how he can defend himself on the criminal charges, fight an impeachment, and be governor of the state, all at the same time. It's monumental because Deficit lingers as Blagojevich faces legal fight:

But the state is facing a potential $2.5 billion budget deficit, and the governor doesn’t have the same horsepower — or clout — to address the problem that he had just a month ago.
His chief of staff, who was arrested along with Blagojevich, has resigned and been replaced by a deputy governor. Another deputy, one with a background in budget matters, has resigned and may not be replaced. Plus, a committee is expected to recommend in early January whether the state House should vote to impeach Blagojevich.

Not to mention:

The delay — blamed on the governor’s legal woes — cost Illinois $20 million in extra interest, according to Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias. Because the short-term borrowing plan was put off for several days after Blagojevich’s arrest, the state ended up paying higher interest rates.
Standard & Poor’s recently put out a negative “credit watch” on the state’s AA bond rating, noting the budget deficit and the governor’s legal situation could hamper efforts to find a remedy.

Clearly, he can't do all three things at once. Although, I'm sure he thinks he can.

Posted by Marie at December 28, 2008 12:23 AM


Answer to the Mansion question: He did sleep there at the beginning of the committee hearing and he didn't like it.

Posted by: Marie at December 29, 2008 10:37 PM

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