Governor Rod Blagojevich has just been removed from office in an impeachment trial held in the Illinois State Senate. He will be replaced this afternoon by Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn, who earlier said he is "ready" to assume his new duties.
The vote was 59 to 0.
The vote was preceded by statements from the senators, some of them bizarre. "Our state government must enter rehab," said one, later stipulating he meant "moral rehabilitation." Senator James Meeks said "This is not a sad day for me, this is a great day... what a joy that we don't have to form a militia... and bomb the governor out of the second floor." Thus, he said, the impeachment is "bleeping golden." Another senator burst into tears, and begged the chambers' pardon, saying "this rehabilitation I'm going through has been difficult."
The vote was then held and counted, and the senate is presently considering a motion to disqualify Blagojevich from holding future office in the state. (Update: Blagojevich's disqualification passed, so no Alderman Blagojevich in Illinois' future; if he escapes prison, he might try lobbying.)