Monday, February 13, 2006

Don’t Patronage Me

I’ve said it here before – State politics bores me. The biggest reason is, nothing ever really changes. Republicans and Democrats seem to behave similarly when in power, the same issues in running state government seem to crop up and most of the population doesn’t like any of it. Same shit different day.

With that in mind, I read this SJ-R story with amusement today. Basically, it details how there are a lot of people who contributed to the Blagojevich campaign who now have state jobs. I’m shocked, shocked!

Having been a state employee for a period of time during the administrations of at least two of Blago’s predecessors, I can say this is nothing new. So where's the story? Apparently, it’s here:
Although it wouldn't be unusual in Illinois for a new administration to reward political activists with jobs, Blagojevich took office in 2003 promising to clean up what he described as previous governors' corrupt, patronage-heavy hiring.
OK, Blagojevich is breaking a campaign “promise”. That’s wrong. But has any candidate for governor NOT promised to “clean up State government”? Has any governor not bent or overtly broken the rules to get people jobs? No.

It’s wrong and maybe getting tough on this sort of thing will stop it. More aggressive reporting on the problem like the SJ-R has done can only help.

Still, the outrage expressed by Blagojevich’s political rivals and their followers is disingenuous. Republicans have and, I’m willing to bet, will continue to do similar things. It’s politics in Illinois and I suspect most other places as well.

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