All-Smiles Governor Was Sinking Fast

Colleagues describe Blagojevich as panicked, delusional
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2008 8:16 AM CST
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his wife Patti leave a downtown Chicago office building yesterday.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – In public, Rod Blagojevich appeared a political natural, charming voters and reeling off anecdotes. In private, colleagues tell the New York Times, the Illinois governor is another man: petulant, foul-mouthed, and prone to bouts of fury if an aide misplaces his beloved hairbrush. As Blagojevich clings to office, insiders say the governor’s mood in recent months has seemed nearly delusional.

After years under federal investigation, Blagojevich’s once-vaunted fundraising ability had dwindled—while his legal bills have mounted. As friends disappeared and the press grilled him on corruption allegations, the governor fell back on bizarre fantasies of a 2016 presidential run. “It’s hard to imagine what could have been going through his head for this to reach such a brazen point,” said one legislator.