December 9, 2008

Anyone who’s ever lived in Chicago knows that Rod Blagojevich is one corrupt SOB. Well, as you’ve all heard by now, he’s outdone himself, and has given the press corps an early Xmas gift with what will certainly be the #2 scandal of 2008 (I’m still counting the Palin wardrobe and makeup mess as number one). Blagojevich and his chief of staff, John Harris, were arrested today on a string of federal corruption charges. The most interesting of these is Blago’s plan to sell the vacant Senate seat that belonged to Barack Obama to the highest bidder, gleaned from “a string of colorful and often profane conversations gleaned from wiretaps in which the governor allegedly discusses with advisers how he can personally benefit from his sole authority to name a successor to President-elect Barack Obama in the United States Senate.”

Here are some juicy tidbits:

“On Nov. 3, the day before Election Day, the governor contemplates appointing himself to the Senate if he could not make any deals. ‘If they are not going to offer anything of value, then I might just take it.'”

From Ben Smith:

“The tapes reveal a two-term governor who no longer wants his job, badly wants cash and is determined to leverage a financial benefit out of his appointment powers.

He also appears to think little of the president-elect, whom he calls a ‘motherf***er’ at one point.

‘F**k him,’ Blagjoveich says of Obama during a lengthy call with top aides and his wife recorded on November 10th, ‘For nothing? F**k him.'”

And the best of all, from Rich Miller:

“Throughout the intercepted conversations, Blagojevich also allegedly spent significant time weighing the option of appointing himself to the open Senate seat and expressed a variety of reasons for doing so, including: frustration at being ‘stuck’ as governor; a belief that he will be able to obtain greater resources if he is indicted as a sitting Senator as opposed to a sitting governor; a desire to remake his image in consideration of a possible run for President in 2016; avoiding impeachment by the Illinois legislature; making corporate contacts that would be of value to him after leaving public office; facilitating his wife’s employment as a lobbyist; and generating speaking fees should he decide to leave public office.”

Unreal. Whatever else about this guy, he’s got a pair of brass ones. And he’s, well, insane…keep in mind that he was already under investigation when he began trying to auction off a seat in the United States Senate to the highest bidder (for fuck’s sake, he considered taking it himself to “obtain greater resources if he is indicted”!!!). And now rumor has it that Rahm Emmanuel tipped off the Feds.


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