Months after the arrest of disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, he is still keeping his name in headlines. The recently appointed defense team of three savvy lawyers, who will be working for the nominal fee of $110 per hour, per person, looks to add another lawyer, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. The whole thing is a mess. The cost is not the case for concern here, although it’s a pressing issue as Blago looks to deplete his campaign funds of more than $2 million in this battle.
The case is an almost utter disregard for his accomplices.
I have no personal hatred for the former governor. I think he’s sharp. After Elliot Spitzer was caught with his pants down with a $1,000-per-hour New York City call girl, Spitzer ducked impeachment and resigned somberly next to his sobbing wife.
Blago, on the other hand, has been throwing haymakers and appearing on a myriad of late-night television shows. In the face of quite literally everyone in politics asking for his resignation, he goes ahead and appoints Roland Burris to take President Barack Obama's former Senate seat. Blago appointing Burris truly shows the exercise of political power, and the unlimiting affairs of the public sphere of politics.
It seems that during this shift from arrest to what will turn in to a lengthy and expensive trial, many of the former governor's pals are able to sneak away. I think in these trying times many Americans fear the chaos of these political powerhouses. He was impeached with only one person voting absent. So, no one else knew of what Blago had cooking? No one else had their hand in that cookie jar?
Rahm Emanuel was having hourlong phone conversations with the man. John Filan, budget adviser and designer of the state's financial ruin, now runs the Illinois Finance Authority. He should have been gone on day one. The parameter of politics limits itself to a failure that is self-appointed. What is disappointing is there is no answer to these questions.
There is no way to rid government systems of corruption. Since the 1621 British Parliament men have abused their power for self-gain. At least then they took down the defendants and their companions in a whirlwind of trials and prosecution. There should be a team or a board that can actually investigate. Sorry Illinois but if you expect Gov. Pat Quinn to relieve Illinois government of any actual problems, you have just taken steps backward.
For these reasons I hope there is a discovery of some sort of innocence. Otherwise, the team that will comprise of five Ivy League educated attorneys (if you include Blago) will have been a waste. It’s discomforting what the time and money of these people could have been brought to. Where’s the justice? There should be a revision of what we focus on, instead of Blago, let’s look at who else could be removed. They're there, they just have to be found. This is also not a direct accusation toward Emanuel but it is something that should not be overlooked.
Kelvin Akehurst is a senior at MU.