Gov. Quinn: Blagojevich 'deceived everyone'

June 27, 2011 (CHICAGO)

This trial's outcome has nowhere near the potential political implications of the first trial. Remember, it happened last year, before the November, 2010, statewide general election. Despite the scandal and the first trial's uncertain end, the Democrats maintained control of the General Assembly and, to the surprise of many political observers, the governor's office.

"It's a serious day for the state of Illinois," Quinn said Monday afternoon.

Quinn, elevated to governor in 2009 after Rod Blagojevich was ousted from office, won election to a full term last November despite having been Blagojevich's running mate in 2002 and 2006. Quinn was able to convince a majority of Illinois voters that he too had been misled by the former governor.

"He deceived everyone. He didn't follow what he was saying in public he did in private," said Quinn.

During the 2010 primary and general election campaigns Republicans tried unsuccessfully to connect Quinn with Blagojevich. But the ousted governor went on a media blitz, during which he was most critical of his fellow Democrats, Quinn and House Speaker Michael Madigan.

"Pat Quinn and Speaker Madigan run from Governor Blagojevich all the time, although one was his running mate and one was his campaign chairman," said Senator Kirk Dillard, (R) Hinsdale.

Dillard, who narrowly lost the 2010 Republican primary, does not believe that his party would have done any better if Blagojevich had been convicted of 17 counts last year.

"I'm not sure it would have changed the outcome of the election. I think people had their minds made up on Rod Blagojevich and Pat Quinn by the time ... Election Day rolled around," said Dillard.

Many other Republicans weighed in with statements on the verdict. Illinois GOP party chairman Pat Brady claimed that "little has changed" in what he called "Democrat corruption" since Blagojevich's arrest in December of 2008.

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