Which news organization will be the first out of the gate to put the word “gate” after the Illinois governor’s scandal? There’s always the word gate after every political scandal, in honor of the mother of all political scandals, Watergate. So what will it be? Here’s a few suggestions:
1. Blagogate: Named for the first half of Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s name. Doesn’t have the oomph necessary. Sounds more like the title of a B movie starring Eric Roberts and Stephen Baldwin shown at 1 a.m. on Cinemax.
2. Badhairgate: A slim possibility to be media-dubbed. It goes to personal appearance — certainly not out of bounds nowadays. And that hair-do is Trump-like, which is fuel for monologues for late night comics.
3. Expletivegate: The gov. curses a lot and when quoted the word “bleep” is used on TV news. The word “expletive” takes the place in print. Maybe too heady for TV — and “Bleepgate” would be too cartoonish.
4. Pay-to-Playgate: That’s what this whole scandal is about — pay to play. Could be too much of a tongue-twister for some TV newspeople. Besides, Pay-to-Play sounds like it might be the name of still another lottery game.
In the meantime, not all of the tapes from the embattled gov.’s still-unfolding scandal have been released. Especially the one where he was treating getting Obama’s vacated Senate seat like it was the big prize on a game show. Which might have gone something like this:
Announcer: Now going up for bid on “The Price Better Be Right” — President-elect Barack Obama’s Illinois Senate seat. You only have to hold on to it for 2 years. Then we’ll make sure you get elected. Eventually it will lead to a run for the White House. Who will go home with the winning bid? Here to find out is your host, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Blago: Ya, ya. Let’s get this [expletive] show going already. Candidate No. 1, whattaya gonna give me for this? Make me proud.
Candidate No. 1: $250,000 and my autographed baseball bat by Joe DiMaggio.
Blago: You gotta be [expletive] kidding me. In honor of Joltin’ Joe’s hitting-game streak, I should take that bat and hit you 56 times with it. Candidate No. 2 — don’t disappoint me.
Candidate No. 2: Well, governor, I’m offering $500,000 and my first born — if it’s a male.
Blago: You’re a comedian, right? ‘Cos that’s an [expletive] joke! You see me going ha-ha-ha here? Your first born — gimme a [expletive] break. You ain’t even married. In fact, I think you’re a freakin’ [expletive]. Candidate No. 3, show me why you should be No. 1. Remember, I lose my cool with people who don’t respond under pressure. So whattaya got?
Candidate No. 3: $750,000 and my brand new Corvette.
Blago: You hear crickets? ‘Cos that’s the only sound I hear — since there’s nothing but quiet to your pay-to-play. Get my drift? Two words: Simon and Garfunkel — “Sounds of Silence.” Your [expletive] Corvette! That’s a freakin’ GM product, you crash-test dummy! It better come with a parachute, ‘cos I’d probably be in an accident and I’d have to bail out of the [expletive]. You wanna offer me your house that’s up for foreclosure too?
You people have no idea how to play ball in the Show — back to the minors with the lot of you. I expect ballpark figures from you and you offer me ballpark franks prices. Whattaya expect from a bunch of weenies. I’m so insulted I can’t even cuss anymore. Like it says in the fine print when you take the oath of office as governor of Illinois: “If you want something done shady, you’ve got to do it yourself.”
Get my agent on the phone — see if anyone’s still interested in that deal for me to host that game show “Who Wants To Make Me A Millionaire.”