Lawyers, try as they may to masquerade as something other, have a tendency under duress to revert back to their true life form.
So our lawyer-Governor Rod Blagojevich, thwarted and humbled in his efforts to balloon the size of Illinois government by raising taxes to the sky ($8 billion) on business with one hand, while socializing our state health care system with the other, hauled off and sued House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) this week, charging him with "eradicating" the governor's constitutional powers.
Madigan, says Blagojevich, "eviscerated" the governor's ability to call special legislative sessions and encouraged state House members to ignore them by simply staying home.
"Lawmakers failed to follow the governor's special session proclamations to address serious issues," explained the governor's spokesman.
Translation: Madigan so neutralized him politically, Blagojevich had no other option than this petty parting shot.
Blagojevich's inane big government, big tax proposals-- what he calls "serious issues"-- had plenty to do with his fate. They went over like a heaping spoonful of cod oil in Springfield, rejected by not just Republicans but record majorities within his own party.
The tax hike plan, for one, lost 107-0 when it was brought up for a vote in the House.
But Blagojevich didn't get the message. He didn't accept the rejection. And seeing that you don't get to be a two-term governor sans confidence and bravado, ours didn't scurry away. He's since played make believe that his statism hadn't been violently rebuffed; he surmised that all state lawmakers needed to do was simmer a bit and they'd eventually see to his way of thinking.
So using his gubernatorial powers, Blagojevich tried to keep the lot of them sweltering in Springfield all summer, twiddling their fingers like children sentenced to after-school detention. Their punishment: to think about what they hadn't done.
Speaker Madigan called this tactic a "farce," and rightfully so. "Special" legislative sessions-- the ones Blagojevich ordered virtually every single day this summer-- were never intended to be a governor's tool of retribution.
They're for "special" situations, of course. And it's up to voters-- not a judge-- to decide whether Blagojevich's "serious" issues constitute one of them.