What a Drag
12-17-2008
It sure feels like the Gov. Blagojevich saga is starting to be a drag on Barack Obama and his presidential transition. From a legal perspective, the drama is actually just beginning, and today’s Illinois Supreme Court decision rejecting the state Attorney General’s attempt to push the governor aside won’t help expedite matters. Obama can take some comfort in new polling data suggesting the scandal hasn’t adversely affected the generally favorable view of his transition, but there is nothing like rampant media speculation and the constant drip, drip, drip of new information leaking out to step on the Obama team’s ability to control its daily message.
 
Obama has said he would like to clear up any questions regarding involvement by him or his staff, but has been asked by the U.S. Attorney’s Office to hold off for now. My guess is that position won’t be politically tenable for much longer. In order to put the speculation to rest, Obama needs one long, no-holds-barred press conference, in which he doesn’t defer answering any questions about what his (and his staff’s) intentions were regarding appointment of his Senate replacement, and how they went about realizing them. Without this kind of transparency, we will likely still be talking about Blagojevich and Obama in tandem, come January 20th.


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