Yes! Rod Blagojevich press conference Fridays! With all the convolutions of the Lost season premiere, only with graft, and poetry. "It is hard to look away, when the Governor has these press conferences," says Lee Cowan on MSNBC. Well, have you tried? You can turn off that camera, right now. Or point it at something else. Anything else!
But who am I kidding? I have been looking forward to this moment all day. He's late, of course, putting Cirque du Soleil through their final rehearsal for today's presser, which is called, "I am Pearl Harbor: The Continuing Travails Of Your Illinois Machine Savior."
And here he is, AGAINSPEAKINGVERYQUICKLY, to explain his stance on getting impeached. He's "eager to call witnesses to show my innocence." He's done things to help people! But as much as he "wants to participate in the Senate trial," he's not going to, because there are these things called "rules" with which he doesn't agree. And witnesses are the key issue, he says, because he'd LOVE to trot out, say, Rahm Emanuel! Or Valerie Jarrett!
Anyway, yes: an impeachment proceeding is different from a criminal trial. And it has its own set of rules. Rules that Blagojevich had, up till recently, accepted as appropriate and legal as the Governor of the State of Illinois. Now he wants rules 8B and 15F changed.
Blago's basic argument is that this is not just about him. This could happen to anyone. "This is a GROSS violation of EVERY Constitutional principle that EXISTS...if they can do this to a governor, they can do this to any citizen in Illinois." But they can't! They can only impeach the one citizen who happens to be the Governor of Illinois! You think the state Senate has the authority to impeach the maitre d' at Cavanaugh's?
Dear Lord, now he's reciting his fanfic script from BONANZA or something! Something about cowboys and frontier justice and gunslinging and the Outlaw Josey Wales. And he's talking about lynching, and hanging, again, because Bobby Rush made that stuff work for Roland Burris. The State of Illinois wants to perpetrate a GENOCIDE against Rod Blagojeviches, and cowboys, apparently!
"I'm here to call on different people to be helpful in this process," he says. He asks the Chicago Tribune and the Sun-Times to yell and yell until the impeachment rules are changed. That's right, SAM ZELL WILL HELP YOU. Blago says that there's some stuff on the walls in the lobby of the Tribune that obligates them to help him out.
He's also asking the Senate to change those rules, so that this can turn into some kind of circus. He wants to call Obama people, and Ted Kennedy and Kathleen Sebellius, and John McCain! Because they will let everybody know that he's been a good prescription-n-grocery buyin' guy!
Now reporters are yelling at him! One is vainly attempting to point out that a Senate impeachment trial is different from a Federal criminal trial. All in vain! Blago is crying about how his rights are being violated. The man is either an idiot or a grifter, raising this argument, but watch as the pundits start talking about what a total political genius he is.
"This is much bigger than me! What about my successor? This will have a chilling effect on future governors!" Yes. On future governors under Federal investigation!
"I don't want to mislead you," Blago says, misleading everyone.
Apparently, having to stand trial is now a de facto violation of the presumption of innocence. Yet, Blago looks forward to his day in court, specifically in a pretend court, that does not and will not ever exist, except in his profanity-laced fantasies, which are all on wiretaps.
Now some reporter is summarizing all his crazy claims, which is that the impeachment is part of a government conspiracy to raise income and gas taxes, and asking, "Are you seriously making this argument?" I am immediately submitting that question to the Pulitzer committee, in the special category of "Yes, As It Turns Out, A Reporter DOESN'T Have To Sit There, Blindly Absorbing The Nitwit, Vapid Claims of Nimrod Politicians."
And now he is leaving, having recited no poems, which is FAIL.