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Illinois hunting and fishing

Gov. Rod Blagojevich, right, arrives at the Tribune Tower for an interview with CNN Monday, Dec. 8, 2008, in Chicago. Authorities in Chicago have arrested Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich on federal charges. U.S. Attorney’s office spokesman Randall Samborn says both Blagojevich and his chief of staff John Harris were arrested Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2008. (AP Photo/Chicago Tribune, Nancy Stone)

Federal authorities arrest Blagojevich

December 09, 2008 at 08:36 AM

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Blagojevich info

Age: 51
Birthdate: Dec. 10, 1956
Home: Chicago
Family: Wife, Patricia; two daughters
Education: Northwestern University, graduated 1979; Pepperdine University, law degree, 1983
Experience: Elected Illinois governor 2002, re-elected 2006; served in the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois’ 5th district 1997-2002; served in the Illinois House from a North Side Chicago district 1992-1996; assistant Cook County state’s attorney, prosecuting criminal cases.
Quotable: “I don’t care whether you tape me privately or publicly. I can tell you that whatever I say is always lawful.”
Indictment: Want some more interesting reading? Here’s a copy of Gov. Blagojevich’s indictment:
Blago_indictment.pdf

 

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was arrested Tuesday on charges of conspiring to get financial benefits through his authority to appoint a U.S. senator to fill the vacancy left by Barack Obama’s election as president.

According to a federal criminal complaint, 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. 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.

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

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

He also allegedly discussed getting campaign funds for himself or possibly a post in the president’s cabinet or an ambassadorship once he left the governor’s office.

“I want to make money,” the affidavit quotes him as saying in one conversation.

U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald said in a statement that “the breadth of corruption laid out in these charges is staggering.”

“They allege that Blagojevich put a for sale sign on the naming of a United States senator,” Fitzgerald said.”

Messages left for Blagojevich spokesman Lucio Guerrero and at the governor’s press office were not immediately returned Tuesday morning.

Among those being considered for the Senate post include U.S. Reps. Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson Jr.

The affidavit outlined a Nov. 10 call between Blagojevich, his wife, his chief of staff — John Harris, who also was arrested Tuesday — and a group of advisers in which Harris allegedly suggested working out an agreement with the Service Employees International Union.

Under the plan, Blagojevich would appoint a new senator who would be helpful to the president-elect and in turn get a job as head of Change to Win, a group formed by the union.

The union would get an unspecified favor from Obama later.

Nothing in the court papers suggested Obama had any part in the discussion. In fact, Blagojevich allegedly said in the same conversation that Obama most likely would not appoint him as secretary of health and human services or to an ambassadorship because of the negative publicity that has surrounded the governor for three years.

One day later, according to the affidavit, Blagojevich allegedly told an associate he knew Obama wanted a specific Senate candidate but “they’re not going to give me anything except appreciation.” He finished the remark with an expletive.

Blagojevich also was charged with using his authority as governor in an attempt to squeeze out campaign contributions.

Corruption in the Blagojevich administration has been the focus of a federal investigation involving an alleged $7 million scheme aimed at squeezing kickbacks out of companies seeking business from the state. Federal prosecutors have acknowledged they’re also investigating “serious allegations of endemic hiring fraud” under Blagojevich, who has a $177,412 salary, though it’s unclear whether he accepts the total.

Political fundraiser Antoin “Tony” Rezko who raised money for the campaigns of both Blagojevich and Obama is awaiting sentencing after being convicted of fraud and other charges. Blagojevich’s chief fundraiser, Christopher G. Kelly, is due to stand trial early next year on charges of obstructing the Internal Revenue Service.

According to Tuesday’s complaint, Blagojevich schemed with Rezko, millionaire-fundraiser turned federal witness Stuart Levine and others to get financial benefits for himself and his campaign committee.

Federal prosecutors said Blagojevich and the chairman of his campaign committee have been speeding up corrupt fundraising activities in the last month to get as much money as possible before the end of the year when a new law would curtail his ability to raise contributions from companies with state contracts worth more than $50,000.

According to the affidavit, agents learned Blagojevich was seeking $2.5 million in campaign contributions by the end of the year, with a large part allegedly to come from companies and individuals who have gotten state contracts or appointments.

The affidavit also outlines Blagojevich conversations related to Tribune Co., which has been hoping to sell Wrigley Field, the home of the Chicago Cubs which the publishing giant also owns.

Blagojevich was quoted in court papers as telling Harris in a profanity laced Nov. 4 conversation that his recommendation to Tribune executives was to fire the editorial writers “and get us some editorial support.”

Harris is quoted as telling the governor Nov. 11 that an unnamed Tribune Owner, presumably CEO Sam Zell, “got the message and is very sensitive to the issue.”

The affidavit said Harris quoted a Tribune financial adviser as saying cuts were coming at the newspaper and “reading between the lines he’s going after that section,” apparently meaning editorial writers. Blagojevich is quoted as saying: “Oh, that’s fantastic.”

“Wow,” Blagojevich allegedly replied. “Keep our fingers crossed. You’re the man. Good job, John.”

Harris allegedly told Blagojevich in his conversation with the financial adviser he had singled out deputy editorial page editor John McCormick as “somebody who was the most biased and unfair.”

After hearing that, Blagojevich allegedly stressed to the head of a Chicago sports consulting firm that it was important to provide state aid for a Wrigley Field sale.

Blagojevich took the chief executive’s office in 2003 as a reformer promising to clean up former Gov. George Ryan’s mess.

Ryan, a Republican, is serving a 6-year prison sentence after being convicted on racketeering and fraud charges. A decade-long investigation began with the sale of driver’s licenses for bribes and led to the conviction of dozens of people who worked for Ryan when he was secretary of state and governor.

FBI spokesman Frank Bochte said federal agents arrested the governor and Harris simultaneously at their homes at 6:15 a.m. and took them to the Chicago FBI headquarters.

Bochte said he did not know if either man was handcuffed or if the governor’s family was their North Side home at the time of his arrest. He did say Blagojevich and Harris both were given time to get dressed before being taken to the headquarters.

He also did not have any details about Blagojevich’s arrest, only that he was cooperative with federal agents.

“It was a very calm setting,” he said.

The governor was to appear later Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Nan Nolan to answer the charges. The time was not immediately set.

Your CommentsComments :: Terms :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

ITS ABOUT TIME!!!!! Hope he gets whats coming to him! Lets see how the guards at the prison treat him! LOL!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 08:48 AM

There really is a Santa Clause.  Ding-dong the wicked witch is dead.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 08:50 AM

Nimrod has spoken!  There may yet be hope for our state!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 08:50 AM

This is just to good to be true. We are all truly blessed this Christmas season. Warm up a cell next to Georgie boy. Now get Stroeger, Daly, and the rest in there to!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 08:56 AM

Yes, Christmas has come early to us in Illinois.  Its about time they arrest this crooked freak.
You play, u pay…......... I wonder how his hair looks in stripes.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:06 AM

THE FULL COMPLAINT!!!!
Trying to sell Obama’s senate seat among other things.

http://blogs.usatoday.com/ondeadline/files/rjb_complaint.pdf

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rpn_7OMV0c&feature=related

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:11 AM

They have an unlimited supply of crooks in Chicago.  Throw one in jail and two more emerge from the ooze.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:28 AM

There’s just one word that sums up this story: PRICELESS!!!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:34 AM

Obama will pardon him no matter what happens. At least our DNR might be spared for a while but our country is still going down the toilet fast.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:46 AM

Oh happy day-Now if only the feds could bring forth some incriminating ties between Blago and Obama.Oh well I supose you can’t have everything, but it sure is a good start!!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:07 AM

Its been a long time coming
Trial and sentencing can not come fast enough

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:21 AM

My wish came true, our DNR has suffered allot to this guy. It’s about time, oil companies and the politicians behind them should be next.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:32 AM

Hahaha, if you go check, you’ll find http://www.illinois.gov/ is down right now.  Would love to see the hit counter right now…

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:33 AM

I hope this is the tip of the iceberg and the clean out the rest of the dirty Chicago laundry.  Otherwise we will be stuck with another one after the next election…

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:55 AM

IL now leads the nation in governors arrested and going to jail. Bye bye blago. May you rot in hell!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 10:56 AM

na-na-na-na-naaaaa!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 11:40 AM

Awesome, can we get our DNR money back and send him to Pontiac??

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 12:20 PM

Is this like tag team.  Governer Ryan has been keeping the prison bench warm for the day when his is pardoned so Blago to take his spot.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 12:26 PM

As soon as I saw this story on yahoo.com I knew I had to log on here to see all the comments.  ITS ABOUT TIME! Can’t wait to see how this pans out…

Posted by WIUBassin on 12/09 at 01:32 PM

Now we can divert our DNR money to the judicial and prison system to give him a nice long trial and a cozy jail cell after it’s all said and done.  Thanks Blagoeraeruarvich.  Hopefully we only go up from here.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 01:48 PM

Since his birthday is tomorrow I can’t think of a better present for him than sitting in jail.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 02:14 PM

YEA what a great year! Finally get him out of here stealing all the money from the dnr maybe there is hope yet!:)

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 03:10 PM

Didn’t he once say “...anyone who owns a gun in Chicago is a gang member and up to no good??

Yet when informed he must surrender his foid card…

“...he listed in his personal property several semi-automatic pistols and rifles that are to be surrendered to the State Police pending adjudication of the case.”

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 03:47 PM

one down dozens to go send him to pontiac with his wife

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 04:44 PM

I have no doubts Obama fully knew everything going on in this case.  He either knew exactly or knew and didn’t want to know the details. obama and blago were friends.  blago wanted to name an obama aide as the senator ,but she withdrew interest in the job.

blago deserves the death penalty. the amount of money he has stolen, and the corrupt acts he has committed that has affected lives, jobs, people, and who knows what else.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 05:14 PM

I’m sure the paper shredders got a work out today in Springfield. Now that they have the big guy I hope others fall with him.  It will be interesting to see who Chicago elects next.

Isn’t Obama’s aid (see Lungbuster’s comment) the one Goblowavich was talking about when he said he’d just take open spot himself if he “didn’t get something good” for appointing her.  I’d bet she didn’t just withdraw interest.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 05:54 PM

Send him up the creek. I got his paddle! I will stick it up his a—.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 06:43 PM

This guy has added another nail in the coffin of organized labor by his actions and affiliation with them, Hopefully our Union leaders will finally quit hanging out with guys like Blagovich. If he was just interested in money why was he such a bastard to our DNR, who are mostly just guys like us actually doing their jobs.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 07:17 PM

DNR means nothing to him, and they could not deliver the bribery money like labor who pay dues. Rednecks in the outdoors is all the DNR is to him. He never ventured foot off the concrete jungle. This should, but won’t be a wake up call to the corruption of unions and the sheer blind loyalty to a party “cuz they are for the workin man”, or whatever your grandfather told your dad when Hoffa was still not missing. Its nice to know your union dues went to bankrupting the state and electing someone who would gladly take away your gun and then hunting rights.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 07:41 PM

After listening to news about Blago, seems like his wife should be arrested too.  How much did she know, how about her business transactions, and she also wanted the six figure salary. What a moron, but we all knew that.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 08:32 PM

Folks, it will be 2 years before he ever has to stand trial for any of this. And even then, he will probably get off easy, or have his sentence waived completely by Hussein Obama.
_
And how much all that is going to cost IL taxpayers! The damages and expense this rat bastard has cost us will never be recovered.
_
As happy as I am to finally see this day come, it troubles me that this wont solve all that much. His replacement will be equally corrupt. That is just how it is with Chicago politics.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:04 PM

GoFishtony-

rest assured. this crime is so open to the public and cut and dry he will be prosecuted and sent to prison long before 2 years come. obama would never be so stupid to pardon him.  trust me…... this is a GREAT day for illinois, not a sad day.

also, when are people gonna learn NOT TO ELECT A CHICAGO THUG POLITICIAN??? between blago, emil jones, rahm emannuel, obama, jesse jackson jr, rezko, daley…. the list goes on and on.  When will we wake up and elect an average everyday conservative from somewhere south of I-80??? HOPEFULLY SOON! smile

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:21 PM

We could eliminate this kind of politician from our State if we all just NEVER EVER voted for anyone that; lives in, was born in, or has spent more than 24hrs in Chicago. Most of us hunt on some nice farmers ground, why not vote for one of them instead. Sorry Chicago people but we really wish you would form your own City-State and leave the rest of us alone.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:28 PM

After hunting this past fall in Schuyler county on some public ground there, I met a fella from up near Chicago who had connections with sed ‘Governer Blago’ and according to this pompous gentleman, ’ you guys down here will be lucky to have this ground to hunt on after this year’. Asking for a clarification on what he meant, he stated that he had close ties the governor and if folks trespassed on his property which adjoined the state ground, he would ’ have the place shut down’. I am hopeful I will not have to worry about such nonsense come next Fall.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/09 at 09:54 PM

Who’s the pinheads that re-elected him in the first place?  It’s about time that the state capital is moved back to Springfield.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 06:24 AM

What did the arrest really do?  Did it do anything really.  I am as glad to see it as anyone, but it doesn’t seem like a big deal to him.  He gets released after a few hours and goes right back to being the governor.  You would think that if a politician was arrested by the feds for the charges he was, that he would loose his job on the spot.  NO!, of course not.  Let the guy go right back doing what he has been doing and even give him a chance to bury what the feds haven’t found yet.  Yes, I agree that Blago got what was coming (well not really), but it’s the whole system that is a joke.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 08:34 AM

I believe he will get whats coming to him. Hopefully all 30 years of it. We all need to join together and write our congressman and senators and make sure they make a example out of this asswhoole. Also while were writing we need to make sure that Ryan remains in prison also. If they pardon him it would be a mocery… What kills me is that everyone has been posting negative stuff on this jerk for a couple years, and he just kept doing all this stuff. He had to know he was going to get caught sooner or later. With his comments about getting the senate seat for himself, so the indicments would be as bad!! Send him up the river with ryan. They can be roomies!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 10:16 AM

Ha! Jesse Jackson Jr. is candidate number 5, the one who was going to pay 1 million dollars. Please let more dominoes fall.
http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/ConductUnbecoming/story?id=6431739&page=1

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 12:17 PM

HEY Rod ! You are going to find out why they it the .....POKIE…..

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 12:19 PM

Funniest comment heard all day was a politcal stratagist laughed at Blagojevich wanting to run for President.  He said Mickey mouse had a better chance of winning that race. Stick a fork in him, he is done.  I see the smug, arrogant weasle leaving office soon, one way or another.  What dominos fall next.  This guy is the true definition of “Moron”.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 03:15 PM

Obama is trying to distance himself from his old friend Blago now, and has even told him to step down. Fat chance on that happening.

I saw Jay Hoffman’s (my representative) comment that everyone was sad to see this happen. I wonder where Jay’s been hanging out. Certainly not with his constituents. Everyone I know is happy to see this day finally get here.

Happy Birthday HotRod.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 04:51 PM

Have you heard about the new sitcom.  George, Rod, and Bubba,  the new odd couple.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 05:06 PM

I THOUGHT HE WAS AN IDIOT FROM THE FIRST TIME I HEARD HIM OPEN HIS MOUTH. HE HAS TOTALLY WRECKED DNR IN ILLINOIS FOR YEARS TO COME. I HOPE THEY FRY HIM OR LOCK HIM UP IN ONE OF THE PRISONS HE CLOSED WITH A GUARD THAT HAD TO MOVE HIS FAMILY TO MAKE A LIVING.I JUST WONDER HOW MUCH MONEY HE LAUNDERED BEFORE ALL THIS CAME OUT.MAYBE WE CAN ALL FIND A NEW HONEST GOVERNOR THAT LOVES THE OUTDOORS LIKE A MIKE HUCKABEE.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 06:33 PM

I hope he is placed in Pontiac prison…talk about ironic. I know that other politicians are “crooked” but this is sick. I’m embarrassed. And the sad part about it is that he doesn’t have the smarts to resign.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/10 at 07:14 PM

This is a start in the right direction, but let’s just hope that the next in line is sensitive to the conservation and environmental issues we are passionate about (e.g., Keep Our Parks Open!).  Given IL’s track record with crooked politicians, we still have to worry about putting the RIGHT GUY/GAL IN OFFICE!  What little good Blago has done for this state is overshadowed by 100X more wrong-doing.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/12 at 04:06 PM

I hope the first time Blogo drops his soap Obama will be in the shower standing behind him.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/14 at 06:47 AM

Isn’t Blago’s hometown in Crook County? I still wonder how high the bid is for his resignation notice or is he just to bold/stupid to realize that he is done for. After the message sent from what happened to Ryan, it just proves Illinois is not going to put up with this criminal politician crap.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/15 at 11:11 AM

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