No Real Mell-Blago News, But Maybe An Explanation
Chicagoist pointed out yesterday (and will again) that the Mell-Blago saga is a sad chapter for a political family that just can't seem to get along. Chicagoist can sympathize, but we don't talk to the media (or you) about Aunt Jezabel's jailtime for hooking and how that makes her kids cry in shame every Christmas. You gotta wonder what motivates folks to talk like that in public -- or why the Sun Times and Tribune are running lame recap stories like they are today.
But then some columnists kick into action, and provide some interesting perspective to the whole mess: Perhaps Illinois citizens will benefit in the end. Phil Kadner from the Southtown points out that at least now, a few crooked landfills will be cleaned up. But the Sun Times' Carol Marin and Mark Brown make the most interesting points. From Marin:
One of the most damaging things Dick Mell said about Rod Blagojevich is that he is surrounded by a cadre of operatives that includes Chris Kelly, a political fund-raising wunderkind, whom Mell charged "trades appointments to commissions for checks for $50,000" to the governor's campaign fund...Boy, if you were a U.S. attorney/FBI kind of guy, wouldn't you now want to chat with Mell?
And from Brown:
We now have two public officials who are on record -- either personally, as in Mell's case, or through underlings, as in Blagojevich's -- as saying they have information that calls into question the integrity of the other.
But now we're supposed to forget it and go away because it was all part of a family squabble?
Federal investigators tend to work slowly, methodically, and very quietly. If there's something behind the Mell-Blago invective, then we aren't likely to see any court action for some time. But behind the scenes, you can be sure life is going to get a lot more complicated for this very complicated family.