Friday, December 12, 2008

Looking for a Good Ole Boy

Should disgraced Democratic Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich give into reality and resign, he will be replaced by Lt. Governor Pat Quinn. Mr. Quinn, also a Democrat, has a reputation as an outsider who has made his career outside Chicago machine politics. In most states that would be considered a strength given recent history, but The Hill suggests that Democrats are quietly raising concerns:

Quinn is a wild card in the ordinarily well-ordered deck of Chicago machinepolitics, someone who has built his political career on challenging theestablishment rather than playing along, according to Illinois politicalobservers."He's been kind of an outsider.

People have described him as a gadfly," saidEric Adelstein, a Democratic consultant based in Chicago. Quinn, Adelstein said, is "somebodywho's fought the system."

That unnerves some in the Chicago machine who would be uncomfortable withQuinn choosing a senator. At least a few top Democrats seem willing to risklosing the seat to Republicans rather than allowing Quinn to have his way.

One wonders exactly what it takes for the political class of a state to make up its mind that business as usual is not acceptable.

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