Blagojevich's Nov. 5 victory can be encapsulated as follows: A monstrous vote in Chicago
, coupled with a surprising vote Downstate, equals a comfortable win. The Democrat won big in his Chicago base
, and Ryan didn't checkmate him in his Collar County base or Downstate. Statewide, Blagojevich beat Ryan by a surprisingly narrow 52-48 percent margin. In fact, Blagojevich's total vote of 1,820,059 was 225,868 more than Democrat Glenn Poshard's 1998 vote of 1,594,191, and Jim Ryan's total of 1,584,684 was 129,410 less than George Ryan's 1998 vote of 1,714,094. Ryan triumphed by 119,903 votes in 1998. That means that the $23 million raised and spent by Blagojevich, when coupled with George Ryan's perceived culpability in the licenses-for-bribes scandal, moved a grand total of 350,000 votes. But victory, as they say, has a thousand mothers, and nobody really cares from whence it comes.