Yesterday brought us a new scandal for the media to pore over. I've chosen to call it Blago-Gate, because soon-to-be-former-Illinois-governor Rod Blagojevich's name is...I don't know....too difficult to spell or pronounce. You know, those ethnic names and all.
I discovered yesterday, when I read the criminal charges that prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald (of Scooter Libby case fame) brought against Gov. Blago, a Democrat, that Blago is a bit of a sleazeball.
Jack Cafferty from CNN called the arrested-and-out-on-bond governor a "punk." Pretty close.
From the charges, made possible by the FBI's wiretapping of Blago's office, it looks like the governor was really, really desperate to find money or tony jobs for either himself or his wife through a pay-to-play approach to Illinois state business.
Of all the talking heads I listened to yesterday, I think Pat Buchanan of MSNBC had it the closest. While just about everyone else needed smelling salts because of the, you know, salty language, Buchanan said (and I'm paraphrasing) "It was just a lot of talk and, in fact, Blago and his wife didn't actually receive anything." You know...no quid for the quo.
For all of Fitzgerald's bluster and grandstanding yesterday in announcing the Blago arrest.....he still has to prove his case in court. I found one of the FBI guy's comments yesterday....interesting. The agent made a judgment call that Illinois might be the most corrupt state in the Union.....anecdotal evidence can be fun and all, but I wonder if the agent's claim was based on some, you know empirical data. Also of interest is the fact that this investigation has been going on since 2003. The arrest timing, just some 40 days before Illinois President-elect Obama's inauguration, is also interesting.
If anything, Blago was simply not as refined of a pay-to-play politico as all the rest of the pay-to-play politicos in the nation. Our political system OPERATES on a pay-to-play system of governance. A mutual backscratching, if you will. Anyone who doesn't believe that hasn't been paying attention.
Until our entire campaign financing system is overhauled...the whole thing is a huge pay-to-play operation. And all of us know that. Gov. Blago simply was too crude in going about it. Just too Sopranoish. Blago should have gone to the Scooter Libby refining school of political criminality to knock off all those rough Chicago edges....and did I mention the bad language?
Now here's what will become the real story: President-elect Obama is from Illinois....Rod Blago is from Illinois, therefore, if Blago is guilty of sleaze and corruption....so is Obama. Obama knows Blago...Blago is most likely guilty, therefore, Obama is also guilty. Blago is, most likely, guilty of attempting to sell Obama's vacated senate seat, therefore, because it's Obama's seat....Obama is guilty too.
As the story will turn, Obama knew Blago and kept his distance, but just like with Rev Wright, the accusation will be that Obama should have picked up and left Illinois altogether rather than be a politician in the same state as Blago. Far-fetched? Just stay tuned.
That's what the story will become. There were signs of this already on FOX yesterday. As you already know from the Rev. Wright and Bill Ayers situations, if Obama has had any association with anyone bad, even if Obama is only acquainted with the bad people....Obama is also bad. It is said in response to the guilt-by-association charges that flowed freely during the campaigns, that Obama just has bad judgment or otherwise he wouldn't have associated with all those bad people. But it's not the bad judgment angle the critics are pushing, not at all, it's the angle that IF Wright, Ayers, and now Blago, are guilty of something, then Obama is also guilty.
Some of the fair-minded, objective thinking "journalists" were pushing the "what did Obama know and when did he know it" routine yesterday. "Is the Obama honeymoon already over?", was asked by several teevee "experts."
If there were just enough days left until January 20, I think impeachment proceedings for president-elect Obama could get underway. And that would blend-in nicely with where America is right now.
It could be America's first pre-emptive impeachment. I mean, why wait for a "mushroom cloud" when a "smoking gun" will do quite nicely?
And honestly, what better way could there be to usher out a current president who is totally deserving of impeachment, than to impeach the new president-elect before he takes office?
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