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Archive for the ‘Rod Blagojevich’ Category

Senate Votes To Remove Blagojevich From Office, 59-0

CHRISTOPHER WILLS | January 29, 2009 08:14 PM EST | AP

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Gov. Rod Blagojevich was thrown out of office Thursday without a single lawmaker rising in his defense, ending a nearly two-month crisis that erupted with his arrest on charges he tried to sell Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat.

Blagojevich becomes the first U.S. governor in more than 20 years to be removed by impeachment.

After a four-day trial, the Illinois Senate voted 59-0 to convict him of abuse of power, automatically ousting the second-term Democrat. In a second, identical vote, lawmakers further barred Blagojevich from ever holding public office in the state again.

“He failed the test of character. He is beneath the dignity of the state of Illinois. He is no longer worthy to be our governor,” said Sen. Matt Murphy, a Republican from suburban Chicago.

Blagojevich’s troubles are not over. Federal prosecutors are drawing up an indictment against him on corruption charges.

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Saturday Night Live: Rachel Maddow Interviews Burris And Blagojevich (VIDEO)

Huffington Post |   January 11, 2009 08:27 AM

“Saturday Night Live” kicked off the year with a new Rachel Maddow impression by castmember Amy Elliott, who joined the show in November.
The show opened with Maddow interviewing Roland Burris (Keenan Thompson) about his repeated attempts to break into the Senate.

Watch the week’s other skits here.

Maddow then welcomed Rob Blagojevich, played by Jason Sudeikis in a horribly realistic wig, who went on to call Maddow an assortment of wrong names from Ellen to K.D. Lange while swearing and making threats.

>>>WATCH HERE<<<

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Jan 9, 11:36 AM EST

Associated Press- Illinois House impeaches Gov. Rod Blagojevich

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois House has voted to impeach Gov. Rod Blagojevich (bluh-GOY’-uh-vich), an unprecedented step in state history.

The action sets the stage for a Senate trial on whether he should be thrown out of office for corruption and abuse of power.

House members found evidence that the two-term Democrat had abused his power, including improperly spending tax money, adopting programs without legislative approval and violating state hiring laws. He’s denied wrongdoing.

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Blagojevich Could Be Impeached Next Week

Via: Huffington Post/ Associated Press |   January 2, 2009 01:41 PM

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich could be impeached as early as next week.

The Illinois House has changed its schedule and will meet several days next week.

A spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan says the chamber may vote on a recommendation from the special committee studying whether Blagojevich should be impeached.

It would take a simple majority vote for the House to impeach — which basically means accusing him of misconduct.

Then the state Senate would hold a trial to determine if the governor is guilty. A conviction there requires a two-thirds majority.

Blagojevich was arrested last month on federal corruption charges.

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Fitzgerald Asks Blago Impeachment Panel Not To Subpoena Obama Aides

Associated Press |  Caryn Rousseau   |   December 27, 2008 02:58 PM

CHICAGO — The Illinois House committee investigating a possible impeachment of Gov. Rod Blagojevich won’t subpoena two incoming White House advisers, a spokesman said Saturday, shutting down a request from the embattled governor’s attorney.

In a letter received by the committee Friday, U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said any such subpoenas “would interfere with the ongoing criminal investigation into the activities of Governor Rod Blagojevich and others.”

Fitzgerald asked the special investigative committee specifically to not subpoena President-elect Barack Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, Obama incoming chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. and Nils Larsen, a Tribune Co. executive vice president.

“The committee unanimously decided from the beginning that they wouldn’t do anything to impede the investigation,” committee spokesman Steve Brown said Saturday. “We’ll follow that practice.”

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Jesse Jackson Jr’s Cooperation with Fitz

By: emptywheel Tuesday December 16, 2008 2:39 pm


Multiple stories–explicitly sourced to Jesse Jackson Jr’s allies–report that Jesse Jackson started cooperating with Fitz as least as early as earlier this year. Here are some data points on JJJ’s cooperation and other involvement.

He apparently told Fitz earlier this year that in 2003, Blago conditioned a position for JJJ’s wife on a $25,000 donation.

Jackson has been in regular contact with the feds and has told the government that in 2003 Blagojevich denied the congressman’s wife Sandi an appointment as Illinois lottery director because Jackson would not donate $25,000 to the governor’s campaign fund.

Also earlier this year, JJJ told Fitz that he refused to accept Tony Rezko’s condition that the state would support a third airport only if JJJ agreed to let Blago approve the airport board.

The meeting in June of 2006 at a Gold Coast hotel included Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr. and Blagojevich fundraiser Antoin “Tony” Rezko.

The topic was a proposed third airport at Peotone, Jackson’s pet project which needed more state money. Rezko allegedly demanded that the governor be given control of the airport’s board. Jackson refused and state support for the project stopped.

Fitz’s folks called JJJ last Monday night to give him a head’s up that they were arresting Blago and that a reference to him would show up in the complaint.

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llinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, left, says goodbye to his two daughters in a mini van as his wife Patti waits to depart their home in Chicago, Monday, Dec. 15, 2008. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

llinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, left, says goodbye to his two daughters in a mini van as his wife Patti waits to depart their home in Chicago, Monday, Dec. 15, 2008. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Obama: No Blagojevich Contact, No “Inappropriate Discussions”

December 15, 2008 05:08 PM EST | AP

CHICAGO — President-elect Barack Obama had no direct contact with Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich about the appointment of a Senate replacement and his aides had “no inappropriate discussions,” a spokesman for the transition office said Monday in disclosing the results of an internal review.

The spokesman, Dan Pfeiffer, said the review itself would be kept confidential at least until the week of Dec. 22 at the request of federal prosecutors “in order not to impede their investigation of the governor.”

Controversy has swirled around the president-elect and his incoming White House chief of staff, Rep. Rahm Emanuel, following Blagojevich’s arrest last week on charges he schemed to trade Obama’s Senate seat for personal gain.

As governor, Blagojevich has sole authority to appoint a replacement, although fellow Democrats have demanded he refrain from doing so and Illinois lawmakers may consider legislation stripping him of his power.

State lawmakers also took the first step toward possible impeachment during the day.

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