Speaker of the House Mike Madigan said this yesterday: "I can't say I knew he was under intense scrutiny at the time." Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn has ducked the question as best he could and suggested there was not a problem in 2006. Madigan was Blago's campaign co-chairman and Quinn ran on his ticket and called him honest and someone who always does the right thing. Both are not telling the truth. Here are what newspaper editorials said during that campaign:
CRAIN'S CHICAGO BUSINESS â€“ "Now a trail of indictments is working its way toward the governor's office, forcing him into the last refuge of the political scoundrel: claiming ignorance of what goes on in his own administration.
In sum, Gov. Blagojevich has disgraced himself and the state. Nothing he may have accomplished in office can erase that taint or entitle him to another term. Voters must send a strong message that Illinois will no longer tolerate the corruption his regime has fostered."
CHICAGO TRIBUNE -- "The scent of scandal constitutes more than smoke. It's a five-alarm fire."
CHAMPAIGN NEWS GAZETTE â€“ "On top of that mismanagement, the Blagojevich administration is the target of at least two federal investigations, one of which has already resulted in the indictment of a top Blagojevich fundraiser. And the head of the FBI in Chicago says that investigation remains hot."
DAILY HERALD â€“ "His 2002 pledge to end "business as usual" in state government has gone up in flames: The U.S. Justice Department has issued subpoenas to no fewer than six state departments; his top fundraiser faces federal charges of cooking up a shakedown-and-kickback scheme of massive proportions; his administration is under federal investigation for hiring practices; and reporters have extensively documented the governor's record of handing contracts and appointments to campaign donors."
BELLEVILLE NEWS DEMOCRAT â€“ "The guy has let down the people of Illinois in every way imaginable. Instead of the ethical government he promised, his administration is the subject of a sweeping federal corruption investigation."
QUAD CITY TIMES â€“ "Illinois voters should run, not walk, away from a candidate that close to corruption."
The campaign ads also tell the story. Illinois Democrats can't escape their past. They had a choice in 2006 to dump Blagojevich and they chose corruption.