Chicago Sun-Times
Inside the Rod Blagojevich investigation and related cases

Blagojevich: Can I be governor forever?

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Reporting with Lark Turner

We're back up and running this afternoon as prosecutors weave a tale, through recorded tapes, of a governor desperate to get into a high-paying job and out of Illinois.

Rod Blagjoevich is on a conference call with advisers where he's heard complaining about President-Elect Obama's political ascension.

"Obama has put a ceiling on me now ... Can I be governor forever?" Blagojevich said on the recording played in court.
Blagojevich appears to feel hemmed in after the 2008 presidential election, lamenting there was no room for his own political movement. He wonders what's better than governor? Mayor of Chicago?
"What else would you want to do if you're governor of Illinois? How long do you want to be governor?" He later adds: "Look at Obama, I believe I'm more pristine on (convicted businessman Tony) Rezko than him."

With John Harris still up on the stand, Assistant U.S. Attorney Carrie Hamilton tries to go in for the kill on the allegation that Blagojevich was attempting to leverage his power to appoint someone to the U.S. Senate to get a personal benefit.

"In the end, he wanted one for the other," former chief of staff John Harris says of Blagojevich's talk regarding Valerie Jarrett, Obama's pick to replace him in the U.S. Senate in 2008.

Hamilton: "To be clear, he did in fact ask for the position of Health and Human Services in exchange for making Valerie Jarrett Senator?
Harris: Yes.

They also touch on the Lisa Madigan deal, which is discussed on tape. Blagojevich repeatedly raises Madigan on tape as a way to scare Obama's people into thinking if they don't give Blagojevich what he wants (a job, ambassadorship) then he'll appoint Madigan.
Outside of court, Blagojevich has repeatedly said that he seriously considered a deal to appoint Madigan to the Senate seat so that he could move his legislative agenda through the Springfield stalemate.

Hamilton asks Harris if the Madigan deal was realistic.
"No one had approached Lisa Madigan there was no steps in that direction, other than discussing possible lists of items that might be in a legislative package," Harris said.

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Don't worry Rod the fed's already know you were more "pristine" on Rezko than Obama, you just weren't "pristine" enough and your approval ratings were in the gutter....the feds' have the cooperation of Rezko, Frawley, Mahru and they have the tapes...well not total cooperation from Frawley he works as an independent contractor but the feds have his back...

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on May 4, 2011 2:19 PM.

Harris to Blagojevich: How about a job with SEIU? was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich: Jesse Jackson Jr. is a "really bad" guy is the next entry in this blog.

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