Governor Rod Blagojevich offered a passionate closing defense yesterday to the Illinois Senate at his impeachment trial. But, the senate voted unanimously to removed him from office. He is also banned from any political Illinois office and will lose his gubernatorial pension.
Blagojevich declared again that he has done nothing wrong. That we all know how things get done in politics. That most of the official complaints against him happened during his first term, yet he was re-elected. That sometimes he may get over zealous in getting things done for the people and that he gets impatient with the slow wheels of the legislature. That most of the things he wanted to get done were "for the children" and "for the seniors". How can they impeach him for that.
Mr. Blagojevich made some valid points about the state senate impeachment process. The rules do seem vague and arbitrary and the burdon of proof is wherever they want it. Whether or not he deserves to be removed, I'm leery of the process. I was also when Bill Clinton was impeached.
The governor talked about his humble beginnings and his wanting to make things easier for people like his hard working parents. Wanting to make sure every child has good health insurance. He did that. Every child in Illinois has health insurance.
Actually, Rod Blagojevich was a champion of the people in many ways. When there wasn't money for some project, Blago made it happen anyway. To this guy the ends do justify the means. And it seemed usually those means include something in it for him. That's the problem with Blago. Personally, I doubt if this guy ever did one thing without weighing what's in it for him. He is a user. He knew how to pull off the big showy coups and be the champion and fill his coffers. He knew how to use a senior citizen or child as a shield to his shenanigans and for his benefit.
You ever been afraid to take a favor or a gift from someone? You know, you say ummmm thanks... while waiting or wondering what it's gonna cost you.
Blagojevich worked his magic and got free public transportation for seniors. Yayyy!! What a guy! Now this happened during a time when the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) was so strapped for money it was threatneing to shut down. The Illinois legislature worked hard to come up with the money to keep it going. When in the eleventh hour, Blago says he will only go along with their solution if seniors get to ride FREE. Huh? Some seniors even balked at this. But mostly the old folks loved him. It may cost between $8 and $16 a day to get to work for everybody else, but hey.
Beware Blago bearing gifts.
The whole selling of the president's senate seat didn't really enter into the offical impeachment. We will hear more about that during the Blagojevich criminal trial. I'm not sure I'd like to see him go to jail. He kind of worries me. I remember when he took office as such a haughty young man with a serious Elvis complex. Unusual for a governor, he didn't work or live in Springfield, the state capital. He lived in Chicago and rarely went in to his office, working mostly from his home. Perhaps a safe environment for making all those phone calls, or so he thought.
Many have said that he is delusional, that he has ideas of grandeur. Now, his new reality sets in. He's not only just another unemployed young man with a family, but he's also disgraced and a national joke.
But, people have turned worse situations around. I wish the same for Rod Blagojevich.