There is more information tonight about the reality TV show Rod Blagojevich wants to be on. NBC announced it has a tentative deal with the former Illinois governor to appear in a reality show that is like “Survivor” with celebrity contestants. Here is NBC’s statement:
Based on the hit U.K. reality show, “I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!” is a groundbreaking live series event premiering June 1 and stripped over four weeks in June. Ten celebrities of various backgrounds will be dropped into the heart of the Costa Rican jungle to face challenges designed to test their skills in adapting to the wilderness and to raise money for their favorite charities. Rod Blagojevich will be a participant on the show pending the court’s approval.
Blagojevich can participate in the show only with court approval, though. His lawyer, Sheldon Sorosky, told the federal court today he will seek expanded travel privileges for Blagojevich so the former governor may leave the country.
Earlier today Blagojevich pleaded not guilty to 16 felony counts of criminal corruption. He faces significant prison time if convicted. That is the only reality I want him contemplating right now.
I urge U.S. District Judge James Zagel to deny Blagojevich’s request. Blagojevich doesn’t deserve to earn $80,000 an episode because of the notoriety he gained in conjunction with the screw job he did to the state of Illinois. (Incidentally, NBC says the participating celebrities will compete to raise money for their favorite charities. I think we all know what Blagojevich’s favorite charity is — himself.)
I also urge Illinois state legislators to act faster on state Rep. Jack Franks’ proposed bill that would prevent corrupt politicians from earning a profit in connection to their wrongdoing. Unfortunately, I’m not confident Zagel will order Blagojevich to stay in the United States, so official measures must be taken to prevent Blagojevich from making money essentially for being a corrupt politician with a crazy streak. If Blagojevich wants to play “Survivor,” let him play it in prison.