Blagojevich Isn’t the First Illinois Politician to Go Down With Corruption Charges

The Land of Lincoln has a past of political corruption.

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"They do not want a skeptical public, a distrusting public," Kerns said of state lawmakers. "They do not want these kinds of things to occur." The problem, though, won't be resolved legislatively. "People have to care," she said. "If the public demands higher standards, it'll happen. It won't happen overnight, but it will happen."

Kerns is traveling the country to discuss ethics with new classes of state lawmakers and, in some states, with established lawmakers as well. She's been invited to speak in states from Alabama to Kentucky to Wyoming, New York, and beyond. Among the states she wasn't invited to visit: Illinois.