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

Blagojevich: 'The whole world is listening' is a phrase I use all the time.

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Reporting with Lark Turner

Rod Blagojevich tiptoes around the trickiest call. In a Dec. 4, 2008 call, he's telling his brother to meet with a fund-raiser, Raghu Nayak, who had already offered $1.5 million in campaign fund-raising in exchange for a Jesse Jackson Jr. appointment.

Dec. 4 call with Robert

"If there's tangible political support like you've said, start showing us now," Blagojevich tells his brother.

Blagojevich on the stand explains that if he's going to elevate Jackson, then he needs to see "political support up front." And insists this is all still a play against the Washington establishment that didn't want Jackson. Blagojevich wanted to put Lisa Madigan in the seat to get a legislative
"I wanted to see him publicly advocating my stuff now," Blagojevich said. "I liked that because that would send a signal to Washington that Jesse Jackson Jr. and I were resurrecting an old political alliance."

Blagojevich also says on the call to his brother: "You gotta be careful how you express that, that the whole world is listening."

But he's not referring to secret FBI wiretaps, he says.
"The whole world is listening, is a phrase I use all the time," Blagojevich says on the stand. "When you talk to someone...in politics...you assume everybody's listening."

Blagojevich says he was hoping Jackson would agree to back a mortgage bill that the then-governor supported. Though this shows up nowhere on the recording.

"In my mind, that day and the day before, we were working on a mortgage foreclosure bill that passed the Senate. In my mind that day was a desire to pass a mortgage foreclosure bill," Blagojevich said. "This wasn't even said because my words were outpacing my ideas."

Even after all these phone calls and arrangements to meet with a Jackson donor, Blagojevich stays on one point:
"I was never going to appoint Congressman Jackson," Blagojevich says.

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1 Comment

That's why you had your office swept for bugs. Not only do you always say (the whole world is listening) it, you live it! Below is a story from 5/2011 News-Gazette:

"Disturbing testimony in former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's corruption trial last summer revealed that Illinois State Police employees were directed by the governor's office to check Blagojevich's campaign headquarters for electronic listening devices planted by the FBI.

The idea that Blagojevich would order such a directive and that the top brass of the ISP would comply with such an obviously inappropriate request was galling. The disclosure seemed to provide even more evidence that the ISP was allowing itself to be used and abused by elected officials for political purposes and straying from its duty as a professional law enforcement agency."

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on June 2, 2011 2:45 PM.

Blagojevich says tape shows political deal with Jesse Jackson Jr. -- not money deal was the previous entry in this blog.

Day before Blagojevich arrest, he talks Madigan, Chico on tape is the next entry in this blog.

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