Fitzgerald Is Fearless
In his Dec. 21 letter, Russell Walker contends that disgraced Illinois Gov. Blagojevich's arrest was politically motivated and unjust because Blagojevich is a Democrat and U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald is a Republican.
Born and raised in Illinois, normally I might agree with this assertion. However, a deeper look is warranted.
Fitzgerald is a man who terrifies Illinois "machine" politicians because party politics is not something to which he subscribes. In his first big prosecution against "The Machine," Fitzgerald convicted former Republican Illinois governor George Ryan of bribery and other charges.
Ryan sits in a federal lockup in Wisconsin, hoping for a last-minute pardon from the White House.
Fitzgerald was a special counsel to the White House in 2003, where his work led to the indictment and conviction of Bush lap-dog Lewis "Scooter" Libby in the CIA "Plamegate" scandal. Libby said enough to get only himself in trouble, but later was inexplicably pardoned.
Fitzgerald was brought to Illinois to rein in corruption in a once- proud state where the mere mention of the name conjures images of mobsters and corrupt politicos. If that means hauling a corrupt governor out of bed in the early morning with no warning, I'm all for it.
Blagojevich tried to sell the vacated Senate seat of President-elect Barack Obama. Sure, they could have mailed him a subpoena, as Russell suggested, but they actually called him on the phone and asked him to come to the door.
As for Blagojevich and Obama being a part of the same system, time will tell. We'll know if Obama does or does not pardon Blagojevich. You can tell a lot about a man by the criminals with whom he associates or whom he pardons.
Justin D. Bradford
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