Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Who Rates In The Land Of Lincoln?
If you're the man who is about to become the next governor of Illinois, you would think the Obama administration would role out the red carpet treatment for you at the inaugural festivities. Not so for Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn. He had a ticket in a standing-only section yesterday for the swearing-in ceremony. "After a security agent told those in his group to get down because they were blocking the views of others, Quinn was forced to kneel on the Capitol grounds next to a tree," reports the Tribune's John McCormick. Illinois State Treasurer Alex Giannoulias, Obama's basketball playmate with questionable ties to organized crime, got the royal treatment. He was seated on the main platform with Obama and said "he felt as if he were on a movie set because of all the celebrities seated near him, including basketball legend Earvin 'Magic' Johnson." Gov. Rod Blagojevich stayed back in Illinois to attend to other more pressing matters like getting fingerprinted again at a federal courthouse, while his wife received her walking papers from her employer. Former U.S. Rep. Mel Reynolds (D-Chicago) got seated in a celebrity-filled section where he got his picture taken with actress Halle Berry. Reynolds served time in a federal prison for child molestation and tax evasion. He was also supposed to spend additional time in prison for bank fraud but President Bill Clinton commuted his sentence.