No Portrait for Blago

[UGCPHI-CJ-weather]Dog Snow Photo
Brian Whiteman

In a double effort to clean up the halls of the state capitol, Gov. Pat Quinn today signed two new bills into law.

The first is an ethics reform bill that promises to make it harder for corrupt politicians to profit from their nefarious activities. And the second? It's a direct swipe at Rod Blagojevich, making it illegal to use state funds for a portrait of an impeached governor.

That means the capitol's hall of Governors will likely never harbor Blagojevich's likeness again.

But the real meat-and-potatoes here is the new Public Corruption Profit Forfeiture Act. This law forces crooked politicians to hand over any money they made from their disreputable behavior. And they'll also have to give up all their campaign funds to the state.

Quinn's office says the law is modeled on one that forces drug dealers to hand over their profits.

But even though Blagojevich's wiretapped antics are clearly at the heart of the new Profit Forfeiture Act, it may never affect him. It won't go into effect until Jan. 1, 2011 -- likely well after his trial has ended.

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