Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Edgar: Illinois needs Blagojevich saga behind it

Photo by jburwen
Jim Edgar is said to be the last of the last three former governors of Illinois to have not been indicted and he's been all over the place as of late. Edgar explored a run for governor against Blagojevich back in 2005 only to say he's retiring from politics for good.

He took aim at GOP nominee for Gov. Bill Brady for his budget proposals and Edgar knows the damage the Blagojevich trial is doing to this state:
The troubles of both former Gov. George Ryan, who was convicted of corruption charges in 2006, and of the most recent former governor, who is awaiting a jury's verdict on corruption charges, have hurt Illinois' image and its finances, Edgar said in an interview with The Associated Press.

But Edgar, a Republican like Ryan, believes the Blagojevich case hurt in a way that Ryan's did not.

"(Blagojevich) runs around and talks so much, he's so visible," Edgar said. "It's really, I think, unfortunate for the state, for a variety of reasons."
I can believe that. Every time Blago continues to profess his innocence people largely knows it's bull anyway. His defense wasn't much different than George Ryan's excuse that how he managed the Secretary of State's office was how it was always done in the past. Blago has often attempted to portray what he is being charged with as simple political horse trading although a lot of it seems way beyond horse trading.

Q: Given that feeling, why do you think Blagojevich was twice elected governor(in 2002 and 2006)?

A: "The first time, it was a vote against George Ryan. He was going to change, reform government. I can understand voters, after one person fails, they were going to turn to the other party."

"The second time, I don't think there is any good reason. The voters blew it. The media actually did a pretty good job of documenting Blagojevich's ethical shortcomings."
Well I didn't blow it. The answer isn't a hard one to come to. Topinka couldn't compete with Blagojevich, perhaps 2006 was the lesser of two evils and the then state Treasurer couldn't prove herself to be the lesser of two evils. Therefore Blago, well he became the lesser of two evils. Believe it or not!

2010 may not be about corruption as I don't believe either of those two gubernatorial candidates are personally corrupt. It's just that who knows if either can really put their foot down on corruption.

This Q&A with Edgar is worth a good read!

Hat-tip Capitol Fax!

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