It’s no surprise that Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn is urging the Illinois House of Representatives to move quickly on impeachment proceedings against his embattled boss, Governor-for-now Rod Blagojevich. After all, Quinn knows an opportunity when he sees one.

Not that Quinn wouldn’t be an improvement over Blagojevich as governor. (Though, I must add, many of us thought the same when comparing Blagojevich to his felonious predecessor, George Ryan, and we were very wrong about that one.) But if he wasn’t next in the state’s line of succession, would Quinn be someone we want inhabiting the governor’s mansion? After all, there’s a reason why Illinois voters denied him several elected offices over the years.

I won’t get into all the reasons why I think Quinn might be a bad governor (corruption is not one of them), but my chief concern about him is his idea of what the state’s priorities should be. For example, yesterday Quinn said the first thing he would do as governor is reopen the state parks and historic sites closed by Blagojevich. Of course I want those places reopened, but is that really the first thing Quinn should do as governor? How about focusing on paying the state’s bills first, Pat?

The state anticipates a $2 billion budget shortfall this year. Addressing that problem needs to be a higher priority than reopening state parks.

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