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Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen


12.09.2008

 

Staggering story from Illinois

From the realm of you-can't-make-this-up:

http://www.chicagobreakingnews.com/2008/12/source-feds-take-gov-blagojevich-into-custody.html


The Chicago Tribiune

Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his chief of staff, John Harris, were arrested today by
FBI agents for what U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald called a "staggering" level of
corruption involving pay-to-play politics in Illinois' top office.
Blagojevich is accused of a wide-ranging criminal conspiracy, including alleged attempts by the governor to try to sell or trade the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by
President-elect Barack Obama in exchange for financial benefits for the governor
and his wife. Blagojevich also is accused of obtaining campaign contributions in
exchange for other official actions.
Blagojevich was taken into federal custody at his North Side home this morning--one day shy of his 52nd birthday.
At a news conference late this morning, Fitzgerald said Blagojevich "has taken us to a truly new low" and went on "a political corruption crime spree. We acted to stop that crime spree."Fitzgerald also accused Blagojevich of attempting "to sell the U.S. Senate seat" that President-elect Barack Obama vacated.

_ Terri Hallenbeck


Comments:
What else would you expect from Chicago politicians? How about a legit birth certificate?
 
Typical gop-slime!
 
He's actually a Democrat.
 
no, it's typical illinois "slime." dems and gops both are notoriously corrupt there.
 
With this cast of allies, Obama doesn't need enemies! This is the tip of the iceberg- wait until the whole story comes out- when Blago tries to plead. Call it gop slime if you want but none of these names is associated with the Republican party.
 
Change we can believe in!
 
Three Illinois Governors have been jailed recently. Two Dems and one Republican. Corruption reigns supreme in Chicago, always has.
 
Seperated at birth:

Rod B. and Alfred E. Newman
 
How old is this scumbag anyway? He doesn't look old enough to shave yet. It surely doesn't take long to become a crook in Chicago!
 
Too bad Duane Marsh can't help put this guy six-feet under in his new Illinois job!
 
Illinois has a lot in common with Alaska in the corrupt slime department.
 
How'd this guy manage to not wind up gop-scum in Texas, Alaska or the bush administration.

Shrub may drop every other ball and choke on every other pretzel that comes down the pike, but he hasn't let "talent" like this slip through his fingers since he gave away sammy sosa.

If this blago bonehead gets convicted, he should be forced to share a cell with shrub, scooter, rummy, wolfie, delay, the dukestir, cheney and teddy the terrible.

Of course, if was gop-slime and convicted of seven felonies, they'd give him a standing O, call him a political prisoner, claim he's suffered enough and demand shrub pardon him on the way out the door.

If he's guilty he should do his time like everybody else.

Assuming, of course, bush doesn't continue pardoning and commuting the sentences of everybody else.

When the likes of blago and jefferson start acting like gops and refuse to resign and step down, they look and smell just like the gop-slime sig heil society.
 
Anonymous said...

"Change we can believe in!"

Nice try, little nameless-nitwit fella.

Did ya not hear the prosecutor say that there's no evidence linking this to Obama, little fella.

Good luck, schmuck. Your ignorant anonymous ass is gonna need it.

Always a pleasure.
 
gop-scum
blago bonehead
gop-slime
gop-slime
little nameless-nitwit fella
little fella
schmuck
Your ignorant anonymous ass
 
"Assuming, of course, bush doesn't continue pardoning and commuting the sentences of everybody else"

Ya mean, like all the angels that Clinton pardoned on his way out?
 
Two wrongs make a right?
 
Anonymous...

"Assuming, of course, bush doesn't continue pardoning and commuting the sentences of everybody else"

"Ya mean, like all the angels that Clinton pardoned on his way out?"

Right on cue.

Nice try, nitwit.

How many war criminals, convicted felons and other should-be-incarcerated members of his Administration did Clinton pardon, little factually-challenged fella?

Knock yourself out, nitwit. Dazzle me, little fella.

Always a pleasure.

The DOW was at 10587, the reagan/bush deficit had been erased, there was a record budget surplus, Pat Tillman was playin' in the NFL, we were a Nation at Peace, there were 50-60 thousand US Troops who hadn't been killed or maimed for nothin' and the WTC Towers dominated the Lower Manhattan Skyline on 1/20/01 when Clinton left office and shrub was installed upon the throne.

Shrub's got 40-somethin' days left, little fella.

Assumin' he doesn't really screw the pooch between now and then, ya think your boy's gonna come close to breakin' even by 1/20/09 when honor, dignity, intellect and competence are restored to the WH after the joint is fumigated and we get a legitimate President again, little fella?

Care to make it interesting and put a little wager on it?

Always a pleasure.
 
When you think about all he was doing is pursuing the American dream -- getting rich anyway that he could find. What is surprising is how brazen and open he was about it. I hope that, if he is guilty, he has a long time to reflect on it from the comfort of a jail cell.
 
I knew this was all Bush's fault- everything for the next 4 years will be blamed on Bush. Maybe Bush should pardon the Gov now so Obama won't have to do it when he is out of office in 4 years!
Who's is going to have more associates in jail- Clinton or Obama?
 
Bush.
 
Sorry-wrong answer, Bush has a couple but Clinton had 8 associates in jail. Wait until the stuff hits the fan in Chicago. Blago is not going to jail alone!
 
More Bush administration officials have been conviced of crimes than Clinton administration officials.

Look it up.
 
Who has been Indicted / Convicted or Pled Guilty to Crimes in the Bush Administration?

-Eric G. Andell - deputy undersecretary in charge of Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools (previously senior adviser to Secretary of Education Rod Paige)

- Claude Allen - Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy

- Lester Crawford - Commissioner, FDA

- Brian Doyle- Deputy Press Secretary, Department of Homeland Security

- Steven Griles - Deputy Secretary at the Interior Department

-John T. Korsmo – Chairman of the Federal Housing Finance Board from 2002 to 2004

- Scooter Libby - Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff

- David Safavian - former head of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy at the Office of Management and Budget

- Robert Stein - former comptroller and funding officer for the now disbanded Coalition Provisional Authority, Southern Central Region in Al-Hillah, Iraq

- Roger Stillwell - officer, Interior Department
 
Not to mention those from the Reagan administration indicted/plead guilty and pardoned by the elder Bush and subsequently employed by GW Bush's administration.
 
Don't confuse nekkie boy and the rest of the wacks with the facts.
 
Gee, all blago had to do was pull a shrub/nixon, claim that "it's not illegal if the governor does it", bide his time until the likes of David Frost practices a bit of checkbook journalism, pays him for an interview and his troubles would have been over.
 
Apparently he isn't bright enough to take JW's advice!
BTW- check out these Clinton operatives- all indicted, in jail, or pardoned-
Johnny Chung, David Hale, John Huany, Web Hubbell, James & Susan McDougal, Charlie Trie, Jim Guy Tucker, Patsy Jo Wooten, Allen Wooten, Sandy Berger, Roger Clinton, Don Lasater, Dan Harmon, Bill MCCuen, William Masrks, Chris Wade, Stephen Smith, Larry Kuca, Robert Palmer, Neal Ainley, John Latham, Eugene Fitzhugh, Charles Matthews, James Lake, Ron Blackley, Brooke Mitchell, John Hemmingway, Alvarez Ferrouillet, Michael Brown, Eugene Lum, Linda Jones, Roger Tamraz. 33 associates and all criminals
 
looks like jw has been watching movie trailers for his political history lessons. sure beats reading don't it!
 
Bush has pardoned 120 people, in addition to all of the people in his administration who have been convicted.
 
He's commuted the sentences of 34 others.
 
How about the TONS of Bush Administration officials who resigned as the result of scandal??

Philip Cooney - chief of staff, White House Council on Environmental Quality - a former oil industry lawyer with no scientific expertise, Cooney resigned after it was revealed he had watered down reports on global warming.

* George Deutsch - press aide, NASA - resigned amid allegations he prevented the agency’s top climate scientist from speaking publicly about global warming.

* Michael Elston - chief of staff to Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty - announced his resignation on June 15, 2007. Despite allegations that he’d threatened at least four of the eight fired US Attorneys, McNulty said Elston had served the Justice Department “with distinction for nearly eight years.”

* Kyle Dustin “Dusty” Foggo - appointed executive director of the CIA, the agency’s third-highest post, in October 2004 - resigned and was ultimately indicted on bribery charges related to the Duke Cunningham scandal.

* Alberto Gonzales - former Attorney General - resigned without explanation amidst investigations of the firings of U.S. Attorneys, the politicization of the Justice Department, warrantless surveillance, and the torture and mistreatment of detainees.

* Monica Goodling - former Justice Department liaison to the White House and senior counsel to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales - resigned on April 7, 2007 amidst the investigation of the firings of U.S. Attorneys.

* Michelle Larson Korsmo - deputy chief of staff, Department of Labor - Helped her husband (see John Korsmo, above) with his donor scam. Quietly left her Labor plum job in February 2004, about two weeks before news broke that she and her husband were the targets of a criminal probe.

* Howard “Cookie” Krongard - former State Department inspector general — accused of not properly investigating State Department contractor fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan; of retaliating against whistleblowers in his own office; and of not telling the truth about his knowledge of his brother’s ties with Blackwater, a State Department contractor. Faced with a possible perjury investigation, Howard Krongard resigned on December 7, 2007.

* Julie Macdonald - former deputy assistant secretary for fish, wildlife and parks at the Interior Department - resigned in May 2007 after an “inspector general’s report found she had improperly leaked information to private organizations, bullied staff scientists and broken federal rules.” The Department of the Interior is investigating many of her decisions regarding endangered species; so far seven have been overturned.

* Paul McNulty - Deputy Attorney General for the Department of Justice – resigned, after questions about his involvement in the U.S. attorney firings and his testimony to Congress about the firings.

* Richard Perle - Chairman, Defense Policy Board - resigned from Pentagon advisory panel amid conflict-of-interest charges.

* Susan Ralston - assistant, White House - resigned amidst revelations that she had accepted thousands of dollars in gifts from Abramoff without compensating him, counter to White House ethics rules.

* Janet Rehnquist - inspector general, Department of Health and Human Services - resigned on June 1, 2003 in the face of an investigation into her alleged efforts to block a politically dangerous probe on behalf of the Bush family.

* James Roche - secretary, U.S. Air Force - resigned in the wake of the Boeing tanker lease scandal, after it was revealed he had rather crudely pushed for Boeing to win a $23 billion contract.

* Kyle Sampson -former chief of staff for Attorney General Alberto Gonzales - resigned amidst the investigation of the firings of U.S. Attorneys.

* Joseph Schmitz - Inspector General, Defense - Resigned amid charges he personally intervened to protect top political appointees.

* Bradley Schlozman - resigned from his third and final post with the Justice Department after accusations of actively politicizing the department. He’s currently under investigation by the Department’s inspector general.

* Thomas Scully - Administrator, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services - shortly after Scully resigned in 2003, an investigation by the Department of Health and Human Services inspector general found that Scully had pressured the agency’s actuary to underestimate the full cost of the Medicare reform bill by approximately $100 billion until after Congress passed the bill into law. Scully was also hit with conflict of interest charges by the U.S. attorney’s office for billing CMS for expenses incurred during a job search while he still headed the agency. He settled those charges by paying $9,782.

* David Smith - deputy assistant secretary for fish, wildlife, and parks, Interior Department - resigned on July 21, 2006 after shooting a buffalo and accepting its skeletal remains and meat as an illegal gratuity. He eventually paid over $3,000 for the dead buffalo, but only after the internal inquiry had commenced. The Department of Interior inspector general also noted in a May 16, 2006 report that Smith’s involvement in the designation of Houston as a port of entry for imported wildlife in order to benefit a friend was inappropriate.

* John Tanner - Voting Rights Section Chief, Justice Department - resigned in December of 2007 and moved to the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices. Already under suspicion for aiding efforts to politicize the voting section, the bumbling proponent of voter identification laws angered lawmakers with his comments that such laws actually discriminate against white voters because “minorities die first”. Even more impressive was his apology for the comment. The DoJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility is currently investigating his travel habits and those of his deputy.

* Sara Taylor - Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Political Affairs at the White House, where she was Karl Rove´s top aide - resigned amidst the U.S. attorneys investigation and other probes of Rove´s alleged politicization of the government.

* Ken Tomlinson - Board Chairman, Corporation for Public Broadcasting; member, Broadcasting Board of Governors - resigned at the release of an inspector general report concluding he had broken laws in spending CPB money to hire politically connected consultants to search for “bias” without consulting the board. At BBG, a separate investigation found he was running a “horse racing operation” out of his office, and continuing to hire politically-wired individuals to do “consulting” work for him. After being nominated and serving another term, he finally stepped down from that spot earlier this year.

* Carl Truscott - Director, Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Bureau - resigned. A report by the Justice Department’s inspector general found that Truscott wasted tens of thousands of dollars on luxuries, wasted millions on whimsical management decisions and violated ethics rules by ordering employees to help his nephew with a high school video project.

* Paul Wolfowitz - World Bank President - resigned in May 2007 after a committee report found that he broke ethics rules by giving his girlfriend a substantial raise.

Nomination Failed Due to Scandal

* Linda Chavez - nominated, Secretary of Labor - withdrew her nomination in January 2001 amidst revelations that an illegal immigrant lived in her home and worked for her in the early 1990s. Chavez blamed what she said were the “search-and-destroy” politics of Washington.

* Timothy Flanigan - nominated, Deputy Attorney General (also Alberto Gonzales’ top deputy at the White House) - withdrew his nomination in October 2005 amidst revelations that he’d worked closely with lobbyist Jack Abramoff when he was General Counsel for Corporate and International Law at Tyco, which was a client of Abramoff’s.

* Bernard Kerik - nominated, Secretary, Department of Homeland Security - withdrew his nomination amidst a host of corruption allegations. Eventually pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor relating to improper gifts totaling tens of thousands of dollars while he was a New York City official in the late 1990’s. Subsequently, on November 8, 2007, Kerik was indicted on sixteen counts for bribery, tax fraud, and false statements with a maximum sentence of 142 years and more than $5 million in fines. Kerik has pleaded not guilty. For a rundown of Kerik’s myriad indiscretions, check out TPM’s Ultimate Kerik Scandal List!.

* William Mercer - the former associate deputy attorney general and US Attorney for Montana - withdrew his nomination to be the permanent number three official at the Department of Justice on June 22, 2007 due to his role in the U.S. attorney firings.

* Hans von Spakovsky - Commissioner, FEC - nomination to another term after his recess appointment failed due to allegations that he’d worked at the Justice Department to suppress minority voter turnout.

Under Investigation But Still in Office

* Stuart Bowen - Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) - was once admired for his successes while investigating allegations of waste and fraud in Iraq, but now employee allegations have prompted four government investigations into the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR).

* Lurita Doan - Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration - still in office, despite investigations by both the Office of Special Counsel and the House oversight committee that found that Doan had “crossed the line” by suggesting that the GSA use its resources to help Republicans get elected.

* Alfonso Jackson - Secretary of Housing and Urban Development - following reports that Jackson told a business group in April 2006 that he once canceled a contract after the contractor criticized President Bush, an investigation by the HUD inspector general found that while Jackson told his deputies to favor Bush supporters, there was “no direct proof that a contract was actually awarded or rescinded because of political affiliation.” A second, criminal investigation was triggered in part by Jackson’s claim before Congress in May 2007 that “I don’t touch contracts.” That probe, now before a federal grand jury, has turned up evidence that Jackson may indeed have touched contracts - and steered them towards friends.
 
Anonymous

"looks like jw has been watching movie trailers for his political history lessons."

"Looks like", eh? "Movie trailers", eh? Such as, little fraudulent fella?

Gee, bupkis. I'm shocked.

"sure beats reading don't it!"

You read, eh? Such as?

Nice try, little factually-challenged fella. Your ignorant anonymous ass just makes it up along with the rest of nameless-nitwit nation and the psychotic scum vote.

Always a pleasure.
 
All you guys have only proven that BOTH Bush and Clinton pardoned a bunch of criminals associated with their presidencies. No difference on that issue.

Next.
 
Ah. Another day, another dose of psychosis from jwcoop:

nitwit
little factually-challenged fella
nitwit
little fella
little fella
little fella
little fraudulent fella
bupkis
little factually-challenged fella
Your ignorant anonymous ass
nameless-nitwit nation
the psychotic scum vote
 
There were more convictions in the administration of Bush and a TON more people resigned from the administration in disgrace, as the result of scandal.
 
Anonymous said...

"All you guys have only proven that BOTH Bush and Clinton pardoned a bunch of criminals associated with their presidencies. No difference on that issue."

Well, I suppose that in the sense that mass murder and jaywalking are the same in that they are both crimes you have a point, little nameless-nitwit fella.

Nice try, nitwit.

How many scooters were convicted of multiple felonies working out of the White House on behalf of the Clinton Administration, little factually-challenged fella?

Next.

Always a pleasure.
 
There were more convictions in the administration of Bush and a TON more people resigned from the administration in disgrace, as the result of scandal.
 
There is a slight difference between resigning because of philosophical differences with the administration and being charged with a crime!
TONS of people!! Disgraced!!
You must read the Daily Kos.
 
Philosophical differences??

Howard Krongard did not resign because of philosophical differences. He was a war profiteer and he got caught.

Paul Wolfowitz didn't resign over "philosophical differences" -- he hired his girlfriend and broke the code of ethics.

David Smith did not resign over philosophical differences. He broke the laws that he was hired to enforce.

There are dozens of other examples above of people who quit because they did unethical things.

To turn the other way and pretend that these things didn't happen is dishonest, at best.

I don't read DailyKos. I read the newspaper.
 
NEK said...

"There is a slight difference between resigning because of philosophical differences with the administration and being charged with a crime!"

Nice try, nekwit, but there's also a slight difference between being charged with a crime and being convicted of one.

For example, take, oh, say, the multiple felonies in the treasonous-trash service of the current cluelessly-corrupt and corruptly-clueless, illegitimate-trash, gop-slime administration that scooter pie was convicted of, nekkie boy.

Nekwit, my nekwit. Only in the twisted, treasonous-trash mind of the lunatic-fringe likes of your ignorant, ill-informed ass do multiple felony convictions in the service of shrub constitute a "resignation due to philosophical differences with the administration", nekkie boy.

They just don't come any more psychotic and anti-American than you, nekkie boy.

Bail bubbakis outta the bupkis brig and take your clueless-cretin keisters where the climate suits your sheets, schmuck.

Dismissed.
 
Philosophical differences??

Howard Krongard did not resign because of philosophical differences. He was a war profiteer and he got caught.

Paul Wolfowitz didn't resign over "philosophical differences" -- he hired his girlfriend and broke the code of ethics.

David Smith did not resign over philosophical differences. He broke the laws that he was hired to enforce.

There are dozens of other examples above of people who quit because they did unethical things.

To turn the other way and pretend that these things didn't happen is dishonest, at best.

I don't read DailyKos. I read the newspaper.
 
nekwit
treasonous-trash
cluelessly-corrupt
corruptly-clueless
illegitimate-trash
gop-slime
nekkie boy
Nekwit
twisted, treasonous-trash
lunatic-fringe
your ignorant, ill-informed ass
nekkie boy
psychotic
anti-American
nekkie boy
your clueless-cretin
schmuck

Wrong, jw: they don't come any more psychotic than YOU.
 
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