I’m extremely interested in seeing where this Blagojevich story goes, and wish I had time to devote to it. There’s so much information out there now — here’s an excerpt from a recent piece from the Wall Street Journal and Fox News with many of the details.
Funny how Obama’s people said that he had no communication with the governor, yet had to quickly retract that statement after tape of David Axelrod talking about such communication hit the airwaves. It kind of reminds me of the “I never heard him say those things … I wasn’t in the pew those days … Okay, I admit it, I went to the church but left 20 years after hearing those things” debacle with Rev. Wright. I can’t help but wonder if, a few weeks from now, we’ll find out that Obama was in direct contact with the governor about filling the vacant seat in the U.S. Senate.
After all, isn’t one of the people on the short list also one of Obama’s transition gurus?
Blagojevich Arrest Puts Obama Ties in the Spotlight
(FROM: Fox News/Wall Street Journal)
WASHINGTON — The federal corruption allegations against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich cast an embarrassing glare on the world of Chicago politics he shares with President-elect Barack Obama, even though the two Democrats aren’t close and there is no suggestion Obama did anything inappropriate.
The case will keep the public spotlight on some episodes Obama thought he had put behind him, including his ties to Antoin Rezko, a convicted Chicago real-estate developer who was accused in a Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit Tuesday of scheming with Blagojevich. Rezko raised campaign funds for both men, and was one of Obama’s earliest supporters as he was climbing the political ladder in Illinois.
The matter also highlights ties between the disgraced Democratic governor and some members of Obama’s inner circle. His top campaign strategist, David Axelrod — who will move to the White House for a senior adviser’s job — lists Blagojevich on his firm’s Web site as one of his clients, when the politician was a candidate for Congress.
And because Blagojevich stands accused of trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by the president-elect, Obama’s name will be forever linked to the case, even though he isn’t accused of wrongdoing.
Chicago has been home to some of the country’s most notorious corrupt politicians as well as some leading political reformers. Obama throughout his career has tried to portray himself as being firmly in the latter camp, while critics have repeatedly tried to tie him to the “Chicago machine” environment that shaped his early political career.