Tag Archive for ‘Blagojevich’
He knew that he was destined for greatness. The son of uneducated manual laborers, immigrants to Illinois, he was never much of a student, but he would become a successful lawyer. From a young age, though, his sights were set on political power. Through his political connections, he got himself elected to the Illinois House of Representatives and, later, to the U.S. Congress from Illinois.
On December 9, 2008, as I read through the federal criminal complaint against the latest Illinois governor to be indicted for the merest portion of his crimes, I could not help but feel uneasy. Sure, it was great fun to imagine Governor Hot Rod sweating it out in his holding cell, awaiting arraignment later in the day. Even the most casual observer of Illinois politics knew that Milorad Blagojevich, our S.O.B., had to be corrupt. After all, you don’t get elected governor of Illinois as a reformer if you actually are one.
As the former governor of Illinois crisscrossed the country on his farewell tour, I kept imagining him lying back in his seat, scalp being massaged by his personal hairstylist (it takes work to keep that Serbian gangster hairdo in pristine shape), while an old Mac Davis song played on an endless loop on his iPod:
O Lord, it’s hard to be humble
When you’re perfect in every way
I can’t wait to look in the mirror
’cause I get better looking each day
“Here, Bobby, hold that mirror up. I gotta work on my smile. Those gals on The View are gonna fall for my eyes.”
Yet, on hearing U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald describe a plot by his governor to sell his Senate seat—”conduct (that) would make Lincoln roll over in his grave”—how did reform President Barack Obama respond? “I had no contact with the governor or his office, and so I was not aware of what was happening. … And as I said, it is a sad day for Illinois. Beyond that, I don’t think it’s appropriate to comment.”
Federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald may be right about a lot of things when it comes to former Illinois Gov. George Ryan’s future cellmate—current Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich—but he got one thing very wrong at today’s press conference.
In a nutshell, Governor Blagojevich is being charged with trying to squeeze the Chicago Tribune into firing editorialists who don’t like him and trying to sell President-elect Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder. After a few weeks of tapped phones and wired pals, Blago managed to give Fitzgerald lots and lots of incriminating comments, many of them laced with f-bombs, including one mother-f-bomb dropped on the name of one President-elect Barack Obama. Uh-oh.