Tue June 28, 2011
Local reaction to Blago verdict
By Susan Stephens
DeKalb, IL – NIU political scientist Matt Streb says he's not convinced this trial will have any lasting effects on the political climate in Illinois. Streb says people may have been waiting for a bombshell in this trial, such as the President being called to testify, but it never happened. Streb says Illinoisans are ready to move on with their lives.
Paul Logli is a prosecutor who served as Winnebago County State's Attorney for many years. He credits Patrick Fitzgerald for making the tough decision to retry Blagojevich. Logli says even though Blagojevich didn't have any legal funds this time around.he believes the former governor's defense did NOT suffer as a result.
A fellow Democrat who worked for years to bring down former Governor Blagojevich calls Monday's verdict a "big win" for the citizens of Illinois. Jack Franks feels vindicated. He says for a long time, he was the only one saying Blagojevich was a criminal who needed to be pushed out.
The State Representative from McHenry County says the guilty verdicts tell the rest of the country that Illinois is serious about rooting out corruption. And that could only help the state's business climate.
Franks has been fiercely critical of Blagojevich for years, even heading up recall efforts and legislation to keep his fellow Democrat from profiting off his autobiography. But in the end, he says he will celebrate the jury's decisions, but not gloat. There are Blagojevich's two daughters to think of.
Franks says if any good has come out of the rise and fall of Rod Blagojevich, it would have to be stronger ethics laws. His next target? Term limits for the state's four top legislative leaders.