Chicago Sun-Times
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Durbin on Blagojevich: Sad day for Illinois


December 9, 2008


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) made the following statement regarding the arrest of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on federal corruption charges:

"This is a sad day for Illinois."

"Our system of justice gives anyone accused of a crime the right to defend himself in court. The Governor will have that opportunity."

"But if the allegations in the criminal complaint against Governor Blagojevich are proven true, he has clearly abused the public trust."

"The General Assembly should enact a law as quickly as possible calling for a special election to fill the Senate vacancy of Barack Obama. No appointment by this Governor could produce a credible replacement."

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As a resident of both Illinois (where my wife lives in our joint home in Naperville) and Florida (where I am a physics professor), I am shocked at the blatant corruption of the sitting governor, especially when he knew that he was under serious investigation for official corruption. Having knocked on 1,000 doors in Orlando to help elect President-Elect Barack Obama, whom I truly admire, I am just appalled at the evil intent of the governor of Illinois, in trying to gain financially and politically from the election, and from other events unrelated to the election. He (Blagojevich) should definitely not be allowed to choose Obama's successor in the U. S. Senate.

I also have complete trust in the Senior Senator from Illinois, Senator Dick Durbin, and voted for him twice. However, I disagree with his statement that the Illinois General Assembly should enact a law calling for a special election to fill the Senate vacancy of Barack Obama. Since the Illinois Constitution gives the Governor the sole authority to appoint a replacement, this proposed action of the General Assembly could be thrown out by the Illinois Supreme Court. Instead, there are two proposals that make more sense to me. First, Lisa Madigan has called for Blagojevich's resignation. That would solve the problem in a hurry. If that were to pass, it would be an excellent solution to the problem. But I deem such an event highly unlikely, because he is so intensely corrupt he might try to appoint himself as the replacement Senator, even while indicted. The best solution is to immediately initiate impeachment proceedings, with the aim of conviction by the Illinois Senate before Christmas. Then, Lieutenant Governor Quinn could save the State of Illinois from being the butt of all the jokes of the world, and we may celebrate the inauguration of our next president with dignity and pride.

Practices like this was common long before Rod Blagojevich got in office, or even Ryan. The machine will keep rolling in Chicago as long as Richard Daley is in office. My question is why did Daley get away with terrorizing my hometown Chicago when he destroyed the runway at Meigs Airport? He is a bully and a bad example and roll model for our youth. I even question Homeland Security by not doing something about it. How is it the Governors get popped in Chicago but not Richard Daley? And the machine keeps rollin on... and on... and on... "

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on December 9, 2008 1:13 PM.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan calls for Blagojevich resignation was the previous entry in this blog.

Schakowsky to Blagojevich: Resign or be impeached. is the next entry in this blog.

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