Thursday, January 29, 2009

Governor Rod says: "I did a lot of things that were mostly right." UPDATE: It's bye-bye, Rod!

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"I did a lot of things that were mostly right."
-- Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, interrupting his media whirlwind today to visit the closing of the State Senate's trial of his removal from office

by Ken

Well, I guess that's okay then, governor. Never mind.

The news could come any time now, as the Illinois Senate should be voting on whether to convict Gov. Rod Blagojevich on his impeachment charges, which would result in his immediate removal as governor and replacement by Lieut. Gov. Pat Quinn, and also whether to bar him from holding public office again.

This morning, as threatened, I mean promised, the governor made his farewell address, I mean gave his closing argument to the Illinois State Senate, as it wound up his trial on the articles of impeachment voted by the State House, speaking after the prosecution gave its closing argument, which was an actual legal closing argument.

Instead of speaking for 90 minutes, as dreaded, I mean expected, Governor Rod spoke for only 45, which was undoubtedly good news for the senators. Where the governor is concerned, less is plenty. No, make that more than plenty.

On the awkward if not downright icky side, (1) the governor wasn't under oath, and (2) he refused to take questions, which would have smacked of, you know, cross-examination, like some kind of a trial. The governor, as you know, had boycotted the three days of his impeachment trial.

Legislators, while nervous about committing themselves to such a drastic step without what might seem a proper criminal trial (though of course impeachment isn't a criminal trial), seemed less than awed by the final-day swoop-down. As Malcolm Gay and Susan Saulny report on the NYT website:
Since he will not be giving testimony, senators said his appearance would not be included as evidence in their deliberations.

“All the testimony was heard, so the things that we will consider, all that has taken place,” said Senator James F. Clayborne Jr., a Democrat. “I’m waiting to hear the closing argument tomorrow.”

(Presumably the "closing arument" the senator was referring to was the prosecution's, since the governor's wasn't going to be "considered.")

Further news as it develops.

NOTE: The Washington Post has posted a transcript of Governor Rod's remarks, for those who just can't get enough of the lovable lunk.


UPDATE: IT'S ALL OVER FOR GOVERNOR ROD.
IT'S GOVERNOR QUINN NOW

By 5:45pm ET the AP was reporting that the Illinois Senate had voted to remove Governor Blagojevich from office, and was poised to deliver the second blow: barring him from holding public office again.

Here's Reuters' report. And tomorrow we'll have a report from someone who knows Gov. Quinn really well. John Laesch will tell us who this guy is and why we can expect better things from him than we got from Blagojevich (even of Blago did go down screaming about how Rahm Emanuel is a criminal).
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3 Comments:

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