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

Old friend's interest in Racetrack Bill a 'big, bold red flag,' Blagojevich says

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki and Abdon M. Pallasch

On the stand, Rod Blagojevich seems to place the blame for the Racetrack Bill fiasco on government witness Lon Monk and (deceased) former fundraiser Christopher Kelly.

Kelly, Blagojevich testified, was trying to get a presidential pardon for charges leveled against him in a federal indictment. To do that, he was using connections in Florida, which included a tie to the racetrack-owning Johnston family, to try and get former Gov. Jeb Bush to ask his presidential brother for a pardon -- according to Blagojevich. The theory is a new defense from the Blagojevich team.

"What [counsel Bill] Quinlan was telling me was that Chris was pressing him to get me to sign that bill and was angry that it hadn't been signed yet," Blagojevich said. "It was a big, bold red flag to be very careful."

Kelly had been indicted and Blagojevich knew he was under federal scrutiny: "I was very aware that the ladies and gentleman at that table were investigating me," he said, referring to prosecutors.

The defense can't call Kelly to corroborate the theory: he killed himself in 2009 after pleading guilty to fraud charges.

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2 Comments

Chris Kelly "allegedly" killed himself.

Everyone broke the laws but old Rod Blagojevich, he's "Lily White".
Simply Unbeleivable !!!!!

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This page contains a single entry by Lark Turner published on May 27, 2011 10:56 AM.

Blagojevich blames Madigan for Racetrack Bill holdup was the previous entry in this blog.

#Blagojevich antics continue on second day of testimony is the next entry in this blog.

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