People in uproar as Blagojevich walks free

Local News

(WCIA) — President Trump may have commuted the former governor’s sentence, but not everyone in central Illinois is giving him a pass.

The announcement started a lot of debate as to whether or not the president made the right call, and why.

“It’s really the first thing (President Trump has) done in the last four years that I disagree with. I think we don’t have enough Illinois governors in prison,” said Dan (who did not want his last name published). This opinion was echoed by a number of other Trump supporters.

Blagojevich had 17 corruption charges. He was convicted in 2011.

His crimes included trying to sell an appointment to Barack Obama’s old senate seat, and shaking down a children’s hospital.

He served 8 years of his 14 year sentence.

“I think he served his time well enough. I’m not bothered by this by any means,” said Justin Ray.

Others, like Bonnie Woolard, are bothered…and they’re asking why.

“My thoughts are that it’s sickening. I feel like that decision was made for a reason, and that that sentence should be played out the way it was intended,” said Woolard.

“People who are important have a real responsibility, and if they fail in that responsibility, they should pay big time,” echoed Bob Hughes.

Now that Blagojevich is out of prison, people are wondering what comes next for him. That leads to another heavily debated question…does he deserve a second chance?

“Doesn’t everybody deserve a second chance, in some form or another,” retorted Ray. “I think it’s what you do with that second chance.”

Hughes disagreed. “Part of his sentence was that he wouldn’t have a chance to ever come back and serve in any position. I mean, how could we trust him ever, to do that?”

Part of Blagojevich’s impeachment terms stated that he would never be able to hold public office in Illinois. But of course, that doesn’t bar him from the private sector.

Blagojevich returned home Tuesday night.

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