Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Obama's Pal Rezko Found Guilty On Multiple Charges

A federal grand jury in Chicago just found Sen. Barack Obama's one-time closest political associate and friend, Tony Rezko, guilty on 16 of 24 wide-ranging political corruption charges the U.S. government brought against him. U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, a modern-day Eliott Ness, alleged that Rezko conspired with other influence peddlers in the Land of Lincoln to influence state government appointments and decisions in the administration of Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D). Rezko is still facing trial in a $10 million business loan fraud case and is wanted in Las Vegas for nonpayment of $450,000 in gambling debts owed to a casino. Rezko is facing a very lengthy jail sentence for today's guilty verdict on multiple felony counts. The government clearly has its eye on the corrupt sitting governor and may need Rezko's cooperation to bring him to justice. Fitzgerald has already sent one Illinois governor to jail, George Ryan, who is currently serving time in the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, having exhausted his appeals. During closing arguments in the case against Rezko, his attorney argued to the jury that Rezko had done more fundraising for Obama's political campaigns, at least $250,000 according to Obama, than Blagojevich's campaign. He also aided Obama in the purchase of his South Side mansion in a cozy land deal with an adjoining vacant lot. The guessing game will now commence on just what Rezko may be willing to spill to the government to avoid a lengthy jail sentence.

UPDATE: Sen. Obama made this predictable statement in reaction to Rezko's convictions:

"I'm saddened by today's verdict. This isn't the Tony Rezko I knew, but now he has been convicted by a jury on multiple charges that once again shine a spotlight on the need for reform. I encourage the General Assembly to take whatever steps are necessary to prevent these kinds of abuses in the future."

10 comments:

tarrandwoolley said...

Just putting things in prospective, it seems that $250,000 is relatively small in comparison to the $265,000,000 (one quarter of a billion dollars) that Obama has been able to raise without Rezko. Plus, just curious, the $250,000 was just political bundling and did not all come from Rezko. Finally, I would submit that this is a non-issue, from the PAST.

Lets focus on the NOW. I would focus on this story involving John McCain's ongoing ties with Washington lobbyist:

Why did John McCain speak in New Orleans, Louisiana last night? Perhaps its because his single biggest donor, William B. Lawton of William B. Lawton Company,LLC on May 23, 2008, just ten (10) days prior to his speech, to the tune of $10,000. See:
http://www.opensecrets.org/pres08/search.php?cid=N00006424&name=%28all%29&employ=%28any+employer%29&state=%28all%29&zip=%28any+zip%29&submit=OK&amt=c&sort=A

Mr. Lawton and his company are tied to the Louisiana Reform PAC. See:

http://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/pacgave.php?cycle=2008&cmte=C00409631

The Louisiana Reform PAC has an interesting background in Washington, not the least of which is Mark Zeldon, who has been described as "[a] lobbyist who earns his living cavorting with operatives and other special interests in Washington, DC. He has worked for The c2group, a lobbying firm that represents many industries, and Murray, Sheer & Montgomery Consultants, a lobbying firm in Washington, DC. A DC lobbyist who has contributed to all that is wrong with Washington, DC, politics is now the standard bearer for reforming politics. One wonders if this Mark Zelden ever learned the definition of hypocrisy." See:

http://cenlamar.wordpress.com/2007/11/08/louisianans-united-for-reform-more-lobbyists-more-special-interests-and-more-lcrm-for-lance-maxwell-r-bought-bossed/

I think Advance Indiana should start looking at John McCain's ongoing ties to Washington lobbyist - that is what scares me! It could just be me, but it just feels like or seems a little more relevant to the upcoming election in November.

iPOPA said...

If a "modern day Elliott Ness" dug through every aspect of Rezko's life and found no Obama criminal connection, if one surfaces now via Rezko's testimony, I don't see how we could afford it any credibility, as he will be just another jailhouse snitch trying to save himself by giving up a juicy name.

artfuggins said...

Let's look into Cindy McCain's illegal corporate contributions to John McCain's campaign. that may be where the juicy story is located.

Advance Indiana said...

Rezko isn't going away. He helped Obama buy his house. He raised more money for Obama's Senate and state legislative races than any of his other supporters. Obama represented him in his slumlord business. He's a Syrian immigrant who won lucrative business opportunities in Iraq through ties to a corrupt Iraqi businessman. This is a man Obama met with or talked on the phone to on an almost daily basis until a couple of years ago. You Obama fanatics only wish Rezko would go away.

tarrandwoolley said...

I agree with Artfuggins - lets dig into Cindy McCain's companies, both parent and subsidiaries.

I love how you ignore the fact that Rezko is not involved in Obama's CURRENT Presidential bid, but McCain's CURRENT Presidential campaign is filled with questionable ties - as I pointed out above.

The fact remains that John McCain is the only Presidential nominee whose campaign finance reports are considered "incomplete" by www.opensecrets.org

tarrandwoolley said...

I worded that last post wrong. I want to be factually correct. John McCain has the most "NO DISCLOSURE" percentage. Meaning nearly 13% of all of McCain's donations have failed to have the most basic information about the donor. Sounds pretty questionable to me. Add that on top of the nearly $1 million in PAC money he has received compared to Obama's reported $0, and it really starts to get interesting.

Advance Indiana said...

But for Rezko's indictment and arrest in Chicago just as Obama was set to run for President, Rezko would be closely involved in Obama's campaign today.

Jeff said...

Just to make sure my mind has not left me....If I remember correctly weren't the ENRON guys pretty close pals with President Bush?

Maybe I am mistaken.

Peace

HOOSIERS FOR FAIR TAX said...

BALONEY! That's the Rezko Obama knew during the years they were friends. Sorry, but no person of integrity hangs out or consorts with criminals, slumlords, or thugs.

tarrandwoolley said...

Mere speculation, but nice try.