Thursday, December 11, 2008

Springfield's Lady MacBeth?

Politician's spouses are a thoroughly mixed lot. You get the milqetoasts like Dennis Thatcher, the troubled who get addiction clinics named after them and then you get the Imelda Marcos type or the Mila Mulroney or Margaret Trudeau genre.
Right now, however, my vote for most interesting is Patricia Blagojevich, the 43-year old wife of beset Illinois governor Rod R. Blagojevich. According to federal prosecutors, governor Rod has been up to no good. A couple of days ago he skyrocketed from relative obscurity to international fame when it was alleged that he tried to flog president-elect Obama's seat in the US senate. They've got wiretaps and all sorts of stuff on poor Rod and it looks as though he's heading for the Greybar Hotel.
That was interesting, sort of, but now it's coming out that Rude Rodney may have been spurred on by his missus, Illinois first lady, Pushy Patty. From The New York Times:

"...In the 76-page federal complaint, Ms. Blagojevich appears to be an influential and demanding partner to her husband’s schemes to trade the Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama for money-making or politically aggrandizing opportunities.

The complaint also shows her participating in a phone call in which the governor discusses trading his influence over the Senate seat appointment to earn money and find Ms. Blagojevich seats on paid corporate boards.
And, in a blast of vulgar language, Ms. Blagojevich eggs on her husband when he reportedly threatens to prevent the Tribune Company from selling the Chicago Cubs and Wrigley Field unless The Chicago Tribune fired editorial writers who had called for the governor’s impeachment. Ms. Blagojevich is quoted in the complaint as saying that the state should “hold up that [expletive] Cubs [expletive] ... [expletive] them.”

...Ms. Blagojevich has a deep-rooted political pedigree as the daughter of Richard Mell, the longtime Chicago alderman and a leader in Cook County Democratic politics, who is considered to have been instrumental in getting Mr. Blagojevich in politics.

“Rod’s marriage to her is really what begins his political career,” said John P. Pelissero, a political science professor at Loyola University. “It was really through connections with his father-in-law’s influence that he got elected.”

But in recent years, Ms. Blagojevich, who has a bachelor’s degree in economics and a real estate broker’s license, has attracted attention through the dealings of her home-based real estate company. Her clients have included people who were awarded state contracts or made political contributions to the governor.

The Chicago Tribune, in an analysis, reported that her firm, River Realty, had earned more than $700,000 in commissions since her husband began raising money in 2000 for his first run for governor. The Tribune reported that more than three-quarters of those commissions came from “clients with connections,” not including commissions she earned from Antoin Rezko, a developer and fund-raiser for the Blagojevich campaign, who was convicted of fraud and bribery this summer.

According to news reports over the last year, federal law enforcement officials have been investigating Ms. Blagojevich’s real estate dealings. Officials in the federal prosecutor’s office would not comment Tuesday on whether Ms. Blagojevich was under investigation for the real estate dealings or anything else."
Was Patricia her husband's Lady MacBeth? Who knows but she's already far more interesting than Canada's first lady. I really can't even remember Mrs. Harper's first name. Must look that up.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You gotta find a better pic of Patti Blagojevich. She's actually a good looking woman.