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Ill. Gov arrestred for 'selling' Obama's vacant US Senate seat?


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In a stunning close to a year of numerous political scandals not seen in America in years the Govenor of Illonis political future is on thin ice.

It involves indirectly President Barack Obama. Here ap story.

 

By MIKE ROBINSON, AP

CHICAGO (Dec. 9, 2008) - Federal authorities arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich Tuesday on charges that he brazenly conspired to sell or trade the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by President-elect Barack Obama to the highest bidder.

Political ScandalsCharles Rex Arbogast, AP30 photos Federal authorities in Chicago arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, accusing him of attempting to benefit financially from his ability to name a successor to the Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

 

The Democratic Govenor's chief of staff, John Harris, was also taken into custody. Click through the gallery for other political scandals.

 

Blagojevich also was charged with illegally threatening to withhold state assistance to Tribune Co., the owner of the Chicago Tribune, in the sale of Wrigley Field and the Chicago Cubs Baseball Team, according to a federal criminal complaint. In return for state assistance, Blagojevich allegedly wanted members of the paper's editorial board who had been critical of him fired.

 

A 76-page FBI affidavit said the 51-year-old Democratic governor was intercepted on court-authorized wiretaps over the last month conspiring to sell or trade the vacant Senate seat for personal benefits for himself and his wife, Patti.

 

Otherwise, Blagojevich considered appointing himself. The affidavit said that as late as Nov. 3, he told his deputy governor that if "they're not going to offer me anything of value I might as well take it."

 

"I'm going to keep this Senate option for me a real possibility, you know, and therefore I can drive a hard bargain," Blagojevich allegedly said later that day, according to the affidavit, which also quoted him as saying in a remark punctuated by profanity that the seat was "a valuable thing — you just don't give it away for nothing."

 

The affidavit said Blagojevich also discussed getting a substantial salary for himself at a nonprofit foundation or an organization affiliated with labor unions.

 

It said Blagojevich also talked about getting his wife placed on corporate boards where she might get $150,000 a year in director's fees.

Blagojevich legal troubles joins a list in which in the past year was highlighted by both Eliot Spitzer forcing to resign as New York Govenor, and long time GOP US Sentator Ted Stevens from Alaska lost relection after being sent to jail in other unrelated corruption scandals.

 

More details were expected at a 11am (Noon ET)press conference.

 

Any reactions? Could this case cause problems for Obama like the Rev Wright mess did during the campaign?

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Very true. Just like the Godfather or Goodfeellas movies but sadly in real life. Ill. politics has been corrupt for nearly a century now going back to Al Capone's days.

 

Hey everyone has their price, it's why communism can't and will never work. I have to give it to this guy though, I don't think I would have thought about selling the seat.

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Breaking News. Today 12/12/08 the Ill Attonrey General's office has filed a lawsuit to both the Ill state supreme court and US Federal Court asking them to force the Gov from office and not wait for an impeachment process.

 

Although it looks like Obama was not involved in this, the more the mess from Chicago continues the more this headache turns into a nightmare.

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  • 3 weeks later...

An update from Illonis. The troubled Governor is planning today (12/30/08)to formally announce plans to pick his choice to replace Barack Obama for US Senate. This despite the fact, the US Senate majority leader (Harry Reid)and most Senators have stated they will not accept or sanction and recognize this appointment maybe a first in US Senate since the Civil War days. Here AP/NY Daily News story.

 

Rod Blagojevich to name former Illinois attorney general Roland Burris to Obama's senate seat

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

 

Tuesday, December 30th 2008

 

 

 

CHICAGO - Embattled Gov. Rod Blagojevich is expected to name former Illinois attorney general Roland Burris to President-elect Barack Obama's vacated Senate seatdespite accusations he was auctioning the seat off

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State Senate President Emil Jones said Tuesday that Burris told him about the appointment. Burris did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

 

Blagojevich was arrested earlier this month on federal charges that he tried to sell or trade the seat to the highest bidder. U.S. Senate leaders have said they won't seat anyone appointed by Blagojevich.

 

The Democratic governor has scheduled a news conference for Tuesday afternoon. His aides wouldn't say what it's about.

 

Burris became the first black politician to win statewide office in llinois history when he was elected comptroller in 1978 — the first of three terms. He served one term as the state's attorney general, but he failed in three attempts at the Democratic nomination for governor, losing to Blagojevich in 2002.

 

Although not confirmed, officals from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nv.)and other Senate Leaders have studied the possiblity of not sactioning or recoginze any Blagojevich appointment which would leave the state basically with only one 'regular' Senator.

 

The governor has denied wrongdoing and has vowed to remain in office. Meanwhile both legal action by the State Attorney General and the state legislture has begun impeachment process to remove Blagojevich.

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  • 5 weeks later...

An infamous day in American political history occurred today. Gov. Blagojevich was in sense 'fired' as he was formally impeached and removed from office as Ill Gov today 1-29-09. He joins only a handful of State Chief Executives are removed from office.

 

Lt Gov Ryan takes over as of Tommorow 1-30-09 for reminder of Blagojevich term until Jan. 2011.

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