Updated at 10:25 Chicago time with full Obama opening statement on Gov. Blagojevich....
One minute into his press conference in Chicago, President elect Barack Obama addressed the Gov. Blagojevich scandal, focusing on the main question, what communication, if any, did his staff have with Blagojevich over his replacement in the Senate. He said he was "confident" his team had none, and asked for an internal report he said he would make public.
"I am also aware of your interest in the matter of the Illinois Senate appointment," Obama said at the opening of his press conference.
"Let me say that I was as appalled as anyone by the revelations earlier this week. I have never spoken with the Governor on this subject. And I am quite confident that no
representatives of mine would have had any part in any deals related to this seat. I think the materials released by the U.S. Attorney reflect that. I have asked my team to gather the facts of any contacts with the Governor's staff about this vacancy so we can share them with you. And we will do that in the next few days.
"Finally, on this matter, let me say that this Senate seat does not belong to any politician to trade - it belongs to the people of Illinois, and they deserve the best possible representation. They also deserve to know that any vacancy will be filled in an appropriate way. I hope and expect that the leaders of the legislature will take
steps to ensure that this is so. "