Cleaning out the tool shed
Posted by aogWednesday, 10 December 2008 at 21:21 TrackBack Ping URL

Having watched Illinois politics for quite some time, it goes far beyond plausibility that President Elect Obama wasn’t hip deep in the sleaze while he was a player here.

However, I find it quite believable that he was not involved in the selling of his soon to be former Senate seat1 with Governor “The Rod” Blagojevich. Obama is no genius intellect light worker, but he’s not stupid. It would be obvious on 5 Nov that if there was one tool in his shed that was going to be more trouble than its future discounted value, it would be The Rod, because The Rod is, in fact, dumber than an editorial board meeting of the NY Times2 and the target of a major FBI corruption probe3. I don’t like to throw the ‘M’ word around, because it’s usually just a cheap shot a political opponent, but in this case it’s spot on.

And what could The Rod do for Obama now? A quick trip to the bus undercarriage was in the works regardless. It’s just a bit more urgent now.

Based on the evidence, I think they met, but that Obama fed The Rod a lot of the no information content “that’s interesting … definitely a point to consider … keep that in mind …” that Obama does so well. That’s consistent with The Rod being so upset in the wiretaps. I don’t see any of this sticking to Obama directly. It’s the stuff that went on before Obama went nation wide that Obama has to worry about.

1 As some wag noted, why do we need a replacement? It’s been empty for two years to no obvious detriment.

2 Just read through the wiretap clips for lots of evidence on that score.

3 It wasn’t officially announced, but anyone with the slightest clue knew. Which likely means The Rod was the only political player in or from Illinois who didn’t.

Comments — Formatting by Textile
Harry Eagar Thursday, 11 December 2008 at 12:00

Shades of Truman and Prendergast.

I do think it’s funny. As the Dems twist slowly in the Windy City, their best idea seems to be to put the Senate choice up to the electorate; in other words, the guys who chose Blagoevich.

Explain this to me: How does a guy in a fright wig win election?

Annoying Old Guy Thursday, 11 December 2008 at 13:04

I have no explanation. It is utterly inexplicable to me.

The first election was a bit more understandable, since the GOP candidate, while not known for being sleazy, shared the same last name as the previous Governor Ryan and that was an undeserved stain that he apparently couldn’t overcome. It’s funny, though that The Rod won his primary by depending on down state voters, who he immediately discarded as hicks once he was in the Governor’s mansion (e.g., staying in Chicago and not moving to the actual state capitol, Springfield).

The 2006 election is mystifying. There’s nothing going on now that wasn’t obvious then. His opponent was basically Bob Dole on the state level but apparently the voters preferred stupidity and sleaze to appartchik mediocrity. But not really more mystifying than Gray Davis’ reelection.

But hey, here’s a scenario for you.

Obama wins the election. The Rod calls him, being the Governor of Obama’s home state and a long time political ally, looking to do some trading. Obama, realizing (or being told by Rahm Emmanuel, who is a Big Boy from Illinois) that The Rod is a hole Obama needs to stop digging, puts him off with non-committal fluff, because smart players don’t piss off people without a reason. The Rod, not having a clue as to the political facts on the ground, gets all pissy anyway. RE sees the situation as a big shoe that could drop anytime and decides to eliminate the problem before it’s his and Obama’s problem. RE decides that an election is a bit risky, but not nearly as risky as taking on someone picked by The Rod. Besides, the Machine will control the primaries and the in-state media, so it’s not all that risky. So RE tips off Fitzgerald, The Rod goes down the before the inaguration. RE figures Obama can ride it out and then use The Rod as a cut out to step away from the old stuff, because it’s old news and The Rod is delusional and just flinging mud to be spiteful and it’s all The Rod’s sleaze anyway. Sounds like a winning plan to me.

Harry Eagar Thursday, 11 December 2008 at 15:15

Sounds like the Chicago my southside cousins tell me about.

cjm Friday, 12 December 2008 at 09:19

ideally this issue will keep obama pre-occupied until the mid-term elections in 2010, to minimize the mischief he can get into. what if obama has to step down and fy-brain biden becomes president?!

Annoying Old Guy Friday, 12 December 2008 at 13:10

See the next post for speculation on that.

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