The Illinois Senate did the obvious yesterday in unanimously voting to remove Governor Rod Blagojevich, our 40th governor. His impeachment and quick conviction was almost unprecedented in modern political history. There was no party partisanship in the matter and no one to defend the governor but himself. His helpless effort to go to the people of the nation via television, earlier this week, was truly one of the most pitiful and amazing acts of hubris in recent political history. He will now face a court trial that will send him to prison, thus making him the fourth Illinois governor to go to prison in my lifetime. No wonder this state has a bad reputation politically!
Like many of you I asked myself again and again: "Does this man believe what he is saying?" My honest guess is that he is so out of touch with reality that there is a sense in which he does. President Clinton believed his lies until he was forced to admit them. This man doesn't even have that ability.
We've seen corruption in Illinois before. We've seen defiance too. But shameless might be the best word that comes to mind when one considers former-governor Blagojevich.
Tonight my mind goes to the man's family and his loved ones. (His wife is no innocent bystander in the whole matter at all.) But the man has children and friends, or I think he has friends but maybe he bought the ones he had. How should we pray for him? I pray that the love of God will discipline him in a way that will drive him to repentance, faith and hope. He was baptized into the Orthodox Church, then joined the Methodist Church with his wife. I doubt the church will be of much help to him but we should pray that it is. This sad man will stand as a symbol of shameless corruption for decades. What a glorious story it would be if he repented and asked for God's mercy and that of the court as well. "With God all things are possible." Think of what a blessing the convicted ex-governor would be if he threw himself on the grace of God in humility and brokenness.