As the Chicago Sun-Times reported:
After being at the Capitol much of the day in pursuit of a mass transit bailout, Blagojevich quietly slipped out of the building with his press secretary and boarded a taxpayer-funded jet to get to the hockey game.Various Chicago stations reported the Chicago-Springfield roundtrips cost Illinois taxpayers about $6000. (Ed. note: That's ORD-SPI for you airline people out there, and you know who you are.)
It's not all bad news for the state recently.
Good news: Henry Hyde died. Bad news: he retired in 2006.
Good news: Dennis Hastert is resigning. Bad news: this means Blagojevich will have to fly down to Springfield again, to set the date for the special election.
Good news: Statewide ban on smoking in most indoor facilities takes effect 12:01am, 1 January 2008. Bad news: The Chicago area media have been suspiciously silent on this. A Google search at the time of this writing turned up ONE metro area report and that's the Downers Grove paper.
Good news: The Cook County Board has not raised taxes. Bad news: Yet. Todd Stroger, who inherited the Cook County Presidency from his dad, is pushing for $900 million in new taxes.
Good news: Chicago has a new police superintendent. Bad news: We had to get an FBI agent out of Philadelphia because there was no one in house who was both qualified and clean.
[Ed. note: It's hard to believe the FBI has a better rep in this case, but there you go.]
Good news: University of Illinois went 9-3 in football this year. Including defeating then #1 Ohio State University. Bad news: Illinois is probably headed to the Rose Bowl, and we will be forced to listen ad nauseum about Illinois' last trip there, a defeat in 1984. That's right - I said it, 1984.