Obama's very thin resume was based on his deeds in Chicago and in Illinois.
His reputation as a reformer gave his supporters hope.
What did Obama reform in Chicago and Illinois?
In a very related story, thanks to the Chicago Tribune the Governor Blagojevich scandal may haunt Obama's administration for months, even years. For reasons probably too sordid to be admitted, the Chicago Tribune forced Federal investigator Patrick Fitzgerald to arrest Blagojevich and his assistant just as the investigation was getting to the critical part.
Personally, I think the Tribune caused Fitzgerald to commit "premature indict-ication" in order to prevent his investigators from nailing Senate Candidate No. 5, Jesse Jackson, Jr., with his hands in the Senatorial nomination cookie jar.
The Tribune has been doing its part to protect Democrats, as Chicago and Illinois once more demonstrate why they are both ranked at the top of corruption ratings. The Tribune withheld the Blagojevich story before the election to protect Obama from being associated with the cesspool of corruption in which his political career was founded and nurtured.
Once their mission of getting Obama elected succeeded, the Tribune then undertook a damage limitation mission to prevent other Illinois and Chicago politicians from being pulled down along with Blagojevish. The Tribune's big mistake was that they ended the investigation before Fitzpatrick had much of a case against Blagojevich. Since Blagojevich only talked about a deal, but didn't make one, I have a feeling that this will go on and on since Blagojevich knows the case against him is very weak.
Why resign now?
Hopefully Fitzpatrick will be able to pull some evidence and testimony out of the tantalizing tidbits he collected on the tapes, and eventually nail Blagojevich.
However, I think that Willie Brown, former Speaker of the California State Assembly and Mayor of San Francisco, and a poster boy for cynical insider politics, was right in his December 14 San Francisco Chronicle Willie's World column (Illinois scandal from politician's view) when he noted that if all you got is "just a couple of guys sitting around and talking ... this case could go up in smoke."
At least the smoke will be in Obama's eyes for a long time.