The 1950s were an era of great horror movies, but I tend to get them mixed up, as I hardly saw any of them. Somewhere in that genre there is a monster, wrapped in tape, who emerges from a swamp trailing bandages (or whatever) and commits mayhem. This image, though, may be a hybrid of The Mummy and the Creature From the Black Lagoon. Let’s stick with the Mummy for now:
What’s the point? Barack Obama emerged from the swamp of Democratic Party politics in Chicago. He seemed, at the time, to be relatively unscathed. But there was a hideous figure following him, climbing out of the swamp and trailing baggage of all sorts behind him–a mummy for modern times, Rod Blagojevich. Blago may yet limp in horror-style fashion close enough to Obama to bring him down, or at least deal him a serious blow.
As revelations continue to emerge from Blago’s criminal trial, Obama’s name keeps coming up. John Harris, Blago’s chief of staff, is currently on the stand, and his testimony is tantalizing to say the least:
A top aide to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich said he believed Barack Obama knew of Blagojevich’s plot to win himself a presidential Cabinet post in exchange for appointing Valerie Jarrett to the U.S. Senate.
John Harris, Blagojevich’s former chief of staff, testified Wednesday in the former governor’s corruption trial that three days after the Nov. 4, 2008, presidential election, the ex-governor told Harris he felt confident Obama knew he wanted to swap perks.
I’m not sure which would be worse, Blago in the Cabinet or Jarrett in the Senate, but allegedly both were in play. Today there were more revelations that came dangerously close to the president:
In the next tape, Blagojevich is heard floating another idea — to ask the president-elect to ask Warren Buffett or Bill Gates to throw $15 million into a health-care related charity account that Blago could manage and live off. In exchange, of course, he’d appoint Valerie Jarrett to Obama’s Senate seat.
Blago had just seen on the news that Obama didn’t want Jarrett in the Senate anymore; instead, he was considering her for a cabinet post. But Blago’s not convinced, and he floats this new fund-raising idea.
Rod: This is one of those things where you’re the president-elect of the United States. His people, they go get the money.
Harris: I think that’s a lot easier for them than an appointment, sure…
That is, it would be easier for Obama to pay Blagojevich a few million dollars than to make him a member of the Obama cabinet.
Rod: You go to these big Democratic multi-billionaires … and you ask them all to give 2, … a couple million each … That’s all they got to do for Valerie Jarrett… that’s not hard for them.
To be fair to Obama, the Blago schemes that have come to light so far all seem to have misfired. So maybe Obama really was the one Cook County Democrat who emerged untainted from the swamp. Still, it is hard to put aside the image of the mummy or creature, crawling out of the swamp and trailing tape or something, relentlessly pursuing his day of reckoning with our president.