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

Blagojevich retrial: Doug Scofield takes the stand

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Union leader Tom Balanoff is off the stand and Blagojevich's one-time deputy governor Doug Scofield is the government's next witness.

The prosecution will play the infamous "effin' golden" tape while Scofield is on the stand.

Scofield said he left his position as deputy governor for Blagojevich early on because his children were young and he was concerned about the influence of one-time fundraisers during the new governor's transition. Scofield later served as an adviser to Blagojevich and worked with SEIU, the union of Tom Balanoff and Andy Stern.

Scofield was present for a Nov. 3, 2008 meeting when Blagojevich spoke with Balanoff and Stern about potential Senate candidates.

"A lot of the discussion was about Valerie Jarrett," Scofield testified, adding that Blagojevich seemed "somewhat skeptical" about a Jarrett appointment but was "interested that it was the President-elect's choice."

In a meeting with Blagojevich directly following that meeting, with chief of staff John Harris and at times Bob Greenlee, Scofield said the conversation turned to talk about a position in the President-elect's cabinet as secretary of Health and Human Services.

"The governor was clearly interested and intrigued by the fact that the President-elect had a preference for the seat," Scofield testified. "He saw this as an opportunity."

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This page contains a single entry by Lark Turner published on May 10, 2011 10:08 AM.

Blagojevich defense: Obama's emissary sends panicked email to other union leader after Blago's arrest was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich retrial: Jury hears 'effin' golden' tape is the next entry in this blog.

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