Realizing that passivity has backfired on him, President-elect Obama now objects to Blago’s Senate pick, but clings to the Illinois Democrats’ plan for “a process of succession.” Left unsaid is how the Illinois voters are to be represented in the meantime, while the impeachment proceedings drag along, and why a special election isn’t the immediate solution. (As others point out, there will be an election to fill Rahm Emanuel’s seat anyway. So what’s wrong with a senate election?)
This is what comes from playing footsie with an ethical psychopath and failing to rebuke your own party. Senator Obama supported Blago for a second term as governor. Then he remained mute as ethical issues arose. Next he, through his aides, tried to conduct some type of negotiations for his former senate seat. And when it all came to a head, President-elect Obama let the state Democrats nix a quick deal for a special election. Now it is an unmitigated mess. Can Blago’s designee be denied a seat? Does Bobby Rush’s race gambit gain any traction? A big story just got bigger.
Sooner or later, despite his efforts to distance (but not denounce) the Chicago gang, President-elect Obama has been sucked into the Blago vortex. In the meantime, the President-elect hasn’t done himself any good nor established his moral leadership. Nothing new about these politics. I was hoping for a change.