Saturday, December 13, 2008

Emanuel Talks With Blago Started Before Election

Confident of Barack Obama winning the presidential election, Rahm Emanuel started talks with Blagoyevich prior to the election according to a Chicago Tribune report today. On the Saturday before the election, Emanuel called the governor's chief of staff, John Harris, and delivered the names of candidates acceptable to Obama, including Valerie Jarrett, state Veterans Affairs Director Tammy Duckworth, state Comptroller Dan Hynes and U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky. After the election, Emanual called Harris back to add the name of Attorney General Lisa Madigan. At least some of Emanuel's calls were recorded by federal agents according to the Tribune report. Harris has been charged with bribery and fraud-related charges by federal agents, along with the governor. The report cautions that there is no suggestion at this time Emanuel engaged in quid pro quo discussions; however, it notes the close ties between Emanuel and the governor:

Emanuel, who has long been close to both Blagojevich and Obama, has refused to respond to questions about any involvement he may have had with the Blagojevich camp over the Senate pick. A spokeswoman for Emanuel also declined to comment Friday.

An important point made in the story is the fact that Emanuel, although working for Obama's transition team, has yet to resign his House seat. Emanuel currently holds the House seat formerly held by Blagoyevich prior to his election as governor. A special election will be held to replace Emanuel once he resigns. "The government affidavit said Blagojevich and others were recorded talking about an unnamed "president-elect adviser" concerned about the election for Emanuel's congressional seat who might help the governor land a new job at a non-profit organization," the report says. In a previous prosecution of a top-ranking Daley official, the official testified that a number of city workers were dispatched to work on Emanuel's special election race on the taxpayers' dime.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, there's absolutely nothing wrong with them saying "We'd like you to appoint this guy", as long as they don't offer anything but a thank you.

That's where Blago was cursing and calling Obama a "m------ f-----" for not offering "anything but appreciation in return", sounds like he was mad that Obama's team wasn't corruptible.

However, Rahm Emanuel, I knew he was going to be trouble as soon as I heard him mentioned, if nothing else because he was part of the Clinton administration, and every administration accumulates laundry.

It wouldn't be much different than if John McCain had promised to change Washington, only to start appointing some Bushies, maybe they did bad things for Bush, maybe they didn't, but people would remember them as working for an extra-Constitutional president that besmirched the office he held.

But Rahmbo is not going to be popular with my generation or the people who are 14+ who WILL be able to vote in 2012 if he convinces Obama to initiate this compulsory paramilitary draft he was kicking around.

In the end, I hope nothing happens to Rahmbo just for no other reason than it would taint Obama, otherwise Rahmbo could go to hell.