Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Blago's prison sentence stays the same

Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich's request to have his 14 year corruption sentenced reduced failed today. The hair-brained Chicago Democrat is four years into his incarceration term, among the crimes he was convicted of was strong-arming a children's hospital and construction contractors for campaign contributions, lying to the FBI, and most notoriously, attempting to sell the US Senate seat that belonged to Barack Obama.

Blago's daughters made emotional appeals to US District Judge James Zagel, who originally sentenced him, to shorten their father's prison term, but the judge stuck to his guns. Good for him. Blagojevich should have thought of his family, as well as the people of Illinois, before he began his graft spree.

Sentences like the one Blago received might, just might, convince an Illinois politician not to give into the temptation of going crooked.

Illinois is a basket case because of Blagojevich and his incompetent predecessors, including Republican George Ryan, who also went to prison. But being a lousy governor in itself is not a criminal offense. Otherwise Pat Quinn, Blago's two-time running mate and his successor, would be in prison too.

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