The American Prospect‘s Adam Serwer helps decode the Senate-seat candidates referenced by numbers only in the criminal complaint against Gov. Blago.
A rumor is afoot that Obama CoS Rahm Emanuel may have helped spark the beginning of the end of Blago:
(Note: Scroll down our home page for Blago-Saga reactions from other TMV contributors.)
a. Defendant ROD BLAGOJEVICH and at times defendant JOHN HARRIS, together with others, obtained and attempted to obtain financial benefits for ROD BLAGOJEVICH, members of the Blagojevich family, and third parties including Friends of Blagojevich, in exchange for appointments to state boards and commissions, state employment, state contracts, and access to state funds;
b. Defendants ROD BLAGOJEVICH and JOHN HARRIS, together with others, offered to, and threatened to withhold from, the Tribune Company substantial state financial assistance in connection with Wrigley Field, which assistance ROD BLAGOJEVICH believed to be worth at least $100 million to the Tribune Company, for the private purpose of inducing the controlling shareholder of the Tribune Company to fire members of the editorial board of the Chicago Tribune, a newspaper owned by the Tribune Company, who were responsible for editorials critical of ROD BLAGOJEVICH;
c. Defendants ROD BLAGOJEVICH and JOHN HARRIS, together with others, attempted to use ROD BLAGOJEVICH’s authority to appoint a United States Senator for the purpose of obtaining personal benefits for ROD BLAGOJEVICH, including, among other things, appointment as Secretary of Health & Human Services in the President-elect’s administration, and alternatively, a lucrative job which they schemed to induce a union to provide to ROD BLAGOJEVICH in exchange for appointing as senator an individual whom ROD BLAGOJEVICH and JOHN HARRIS believed to be favored by union officials and their associates.
Blago is apparently quite fond of dropping F-bombs, and per Ben Smith, used an enhanced variation of said expletive to characterize President-elect Obama. Lovely.
In the wake of stories like the one out of Illinois today, I repeatedly find myself contending with the collision of two age-old adages: “innocent until proven guilty” and “where there’s smoke, there’s fire.”
U.S. attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, once Scooter Libby’s nemesis, is convinced there’s enough smoke here to make the last president from Illinois “roll over in his grave.”
Chris Cillizza parses the 78-page criminal complaint and offers ample excerpts to suggest Fitzgerald is not exaggerating.
(From the neighboring state of Missouri, my reaction can be summed up in a stunned, sophomoric, multisyllabic “Whoa.”)