Illinois Governor Blagojevich’s Shenanigans Stalls Civil Unions

As if you need another reason to hate Gov. Rod Blagojevich. The Illinois Governor accussed of trying to sell Obama’s Senate seat to the highest bidder (among a host of other corruption charges) has left the Illinois legislature in disarray, effectively destroying any hope of the state passing the Illinois Religious Freedom and Civil Unions Act. The Chicago Tribune reports:

“First proposed in 2007 and running out of time before the current legislature expires, the bill would grant same-sex couples many of the rights given to opposite-sex married couples. There are two remaining legislative days on lawmakers’ calendar in January—but its sponsor said it would take a back seat to the state’s ongoing budget crisis.

And it seemed still less likely to be called after FBI agents arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on federal corruption charges Tuesday, casting state leadership into disarray.

“Everything has been trumped by what happened,” said state Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago), the measure’s sponsor in the House. A similar bill was introduced in the state Senate by Sen. David Koehler (D-Pekin.)

“Our focus now is how will the state keep functioning,” Harris said.”

For some gays and lesbians, there’s a silver lining to the bill’s death. The bill has many detractors in the gay community who say that anything less than full marriage-equality is discriminatory.

In related news, Blagojevich’s sister-in-law, prominent lesbian activist Deb Mell was elected to the State Senate this past November, raising the possibility she may have to vote on her sister’s husband’s guilt or *eye roll* innocence. That is, if she doesn’t take over Rahm Emmanuel’s Senate seat. She filed her papers for the upcoming special election to the fill the seat last month.

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  • Joe Moag

    Yup. Blagojevich has left this state in a cluster fuck of unfinished business and a mounting economic crisis. As for the domestic partnership bill, you can forget that until there’s a new Governor. And then, it will be a while, as that person will have their plate full of crapola extraordinaire!

    And yup again, the Legislature, the Attorney General, everyone, is in full “what the fuck do we do to get this asshole out of here” mode, and that’s gonna take a while.

    Thanks, Rod! Thanks ever so “bleeping” much! You “bleep”hole.

  • seitan-on-a-stick

    This should be an elected position because whoever is appointed by the Lt Governor will be tainted especially Jesse Jackson Jr (who could be coralled into the pay-for-play fiasco as Client #5) This Can of Worms could find itself linked to all Illinois Democrats (with the wire-tapping by the FBI) including yet-to-be-President Barack Obama who seems the only one above the fray. Say it aint so, Rod! Forget Gay Marriage and get ready for a voter backlash (even if in 2 years) which may see a Republican Governor.

  • Joe Moag

    Illinois has a proud history of corruption on both sides of the political aisle, Dems and Repubs. The next Gov. of Illinois will be a Dem, for sure, as the GOP is so incredibly dysfucntional in this state that they don’t even hold a high-level statewide office of any type currently.

    Moreover, this state votes overwhelmingly Democratic.

    Now, under a special election, a GOP candidate MIGHT get the open Senate Seat, if one Repub runs against several Dems, thus having the Dems split their vote.

    But I can’t see a GOP candidate winning the Governor’s job for quite a long while in this state.

  • Charles J. Mueller

    Another self-serving, scumbag politician, in a long, long list of them of them, that bites the dust.

    Republican Sex Scandals Dwarf Those of Democrats – Salem-News.Com

    And that’s just sex-scandals, kiddies. We are not even talking reaching into the cookie jar for ill-begotten financial gains like this creep.

    And we taxpayers look to people like this for integrity, honesty, justice and equality?

    With one stroke of the pen, powerful people like this are legally entitled to trash the happiness and legal rights of millions of people while fattening their wallets and pockets with our money.

    Tain’t right McGee!

    What a cruel joke on all of us gay and str8 alike.
    We deserve better than this.

  • movie buff

    what’s all this talk about calling for Blagojevich to “resign?” … “throw him in prison” sounds a lot more fitting

  • james ii

    I remember when he was first running for gov., and even before, when he was a US Rep., how he’d always show up at the Pride parade in chicago, shake hands, wear the tight polo shirt, then as soon as he got elected and proved to be a pud, and would not support any gay-friendly legislation [remember the tiff his sister-in-law, who will now get to vote on his impeachment as a newly elected state rep. got into with him a few years back?] and he stopped showing up at the parade, as well.

    The civil unions bill was stalled long before the indictment, because the guy had screwed so many in illinois and made so many enemies that nothing could get done in this state the past couple years.

    I’m glad i never voted for the bum.

  • Ben

    All that pole-greasing and bribe money for nothing. Darn it.


    @movie buff: It’ll be months at least before he goes to prison, and in the meantime he’s still governor. A resignation would mean he could be replaced.

  • seitan-on-a-stick

    When Jesse Jackson Jr emotes like his father, you know he’s pleading with GOD that he was not recorded by the FBI-Fitz-Rahmbo sting. Keeping your enemies closer doesn’t always work (Just ask Eliot Spitzer who crossed Bruno and Bloomberg in New York) I wonder how much Hillary Clinton’s Senate Seat will get at Christie’s Auction House? At least it’s not Nazi Memorabilia for sale…

  • Charles J. Mueller

    Like toe-tappin’ Craig, this POS will maintain that he is innocent all the way to the big house.


    Unthinkable. That would mean he’s lose his way overpaid salary and perks. This from the AP.

    “SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Rod Blagojevich is the third-highest-paid governor in the country, but you wouldn’t know it from conversations recorded by federal authorities.

    He is heard on six weeks of recordings saying he is “struggling” financially, even though he makes $177,412 a year and his household income has averaged $344,000 annually for the past five years. He allegedly says he feels he is “stuck” as governor and imagines making as much as $300,000 as the head of a group pushing organized labor’s agenda or a not-for-profit organization.

    If he could land his wife a seat on one or more corporate boards and she “picks up another $150 grand or whatever,” according to the recordings, it would help him “get through” his remaining two years as governor.”

    Oh, poor baby. Perhaps we should pass the hat for him.


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