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Archive: Blagojevich Scandal

Blagojevich Pleads Not Guilty to Corruption Charges

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich has formally pleaded not guilty to federal racketeering and fraud charges, according to the Associated Press. Blagojevich arrived this morning at the Dirksen Federal Courthouse in Chicago, along with his brother, Robert, to be arraigned on charges of trying to sell President Barack Obama's former Senate seat.

By Amanda Zamora | April 14, 2009; 12:34 PM ET | Comments (6)

Jesse Jackson Jr. Subject of Ethics Inquiry

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) has now confirmed that a congressional ethics board has launched a preliminary inquiry into his bid to take over the Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama. The Office of Congressional Ethics is reviewing Jackson's ties to Rod Blagojevich, the former Illinois governor. Blagojevich was...

By The Editors | April 8, 2009; 04:45 PM ET | Comments (0)

Blago Campaign 'Hit List' Targeted Burris, Other Senate Candidates

Fundraisers for Rod Blagojevich set their sights on four candidates for Barack Obama's then-vacant senate seat in the months before the ousted Illinois governor's arrest, according to an internal campaign document published Saturday by the Chicago Sun-Times.

By Amanda Zamora | March 30, 2009; 01:15 PM ET | Comments (1)

The Blago Book Race

It appears Chicago journalist Elizabeth Brackett is poised to beat Rod Blagojevich in the race to publish a tell-all account of the embattled ex-governor's fall from grace. While Blagojevich is apparently getting up at 4 a.m. each morning to hammer out "The Governor" in time for an October release, publisher...

By Amanda Zamora | March 16, 2009; 04:22 PM ET | Comments (0)

Editorials: Burris 'Must Go'

As newly-minted Sen. Roland W. Burris (D-Ill.) tries to stave off calls for his resignation, the editorial boards of almost every major newspaper in Illinois have said enough is enough.

By Derek Kravitz | February 19, 2009; 01:32 PM ET | Comments (1)

Blagojevich: I 'Followed Every Law'

Offering up his last-ditch defense on why he should stay in office, scandal-ridden Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich said he "never, ever intended to violate the law."

By Derek Kravitz | January 29, 2009; 01:53 PM ET | Comments (2)

Blagojevich Caught on Tape

The first listen of the infamous secret phone recordings of embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich were played this afternoon to a packed state capitol in Springfield, Ill.

By Derek Kravitz | January 27, 2009; 05:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

The Governor's Last-Ditch Media Blitz

Instead of attending his impeachment trial at the Illinois state capitol in Springfield, Ill., embattled Gov. Rod Blagojevich is trying to sway the court of public opinion, waging an aggressive media campaign to tell his side of the story. He's hired a Tampa-based public-relations firm to handle his "media blitz" (the firm specializes in "high-profile clients") and has offered a series of bizarre statements and revelations on the talk-show circuit.

By Derek Kravitz | January 26, 2009; 12:40 PM ET | Comments (0)

Defiant Blagojevich Says He Won't Resign (and Quotes Kipling)

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, the embattled Democrat charged with trying to sell President-elect Barack Obama's Senate seat and orchestrating an elaborate "pay-to-play" political scheme in the Land of Lincoln, made a short statement today, defiantly saying he will fight the federal charges against him and refusing to resign.

By Derek Kravitz | December 19, 2008; 03:51 PM ET | Comments (2)

Blagojevich: 'I Will Fight'

Blagojevich says, "I am not guilty of any criminal wrongdoing...I will fight, I will fight, I will fight until I take my last breath. I have done nothing wrong and I am not going to quit."

By Amanda Zamora | December 19, 2008; 02:50 PM ET | Comments (0)

Zell 'Point Man' Identified as Blago Contact

Tucked away among the jaw-dropping political bombshells in the 76-page corruption complaint filed against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is a reference to a mild-mannered "financial adviser" at the cash-strapped Tribune Co.

By Derek Kravitz | December 12, 2008; 03:43 PM ET | Comments (0)

'Lady Macbeth' of the Blago Scandal

Patti Blagojevich is also a tough-talking, no-nonsense scion of a ward boss who is well versed in the rough-and-tumble world of Chicago politics, according to federal criminal complaint charging her husband with bribery and conspiracy and excerpts of wiretaps on the Blagojevich's home telephone. The Chicago Tribune likened her to "Lady Macbeth."

By Derek Kravitz | December 11, 2008; 01:32 PM ET | Comments (18)

Is Jackson 'No. 5'? Plus: Blago Deputy Quits

The mysterious "Senate Candidate No. 5" in the Blagojevich case -- the politician who the governor said had an "emissary" offer up $1 million for the seat -- might be none other than Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., the South Side Chicago Democrat who is the son of the famous civil rights leader.

By Derek Kravitz | December 10, 2008; 03:35 PM ET | Comments (0)

Blagojevich's Fundraising Shakedowns Detailed

What ultimately led to Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's federal conspiracy and bribery arrest (aside from well-placed wiretaps), federal agents say, wasn't the elaborate scheme for an ambassadorship or the notions that he would sell President-elect Barack Obama's now-vacant Senate seat. No, the feds say. It was the shakedowns.

By Derek Kravitz | December 10, 2008; 01:34 PM ET | Comments (6)

The Blagojevich Files: The Unnamed 'Senate Candidates'

In the lengthy federal bribery and conspiracy indictment of Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his chief of staff, John Harris, a few choice "unnamed" Senate candidates stick out.

By Derek Kravitz | December 9, 2008; 02:40 PM ET | Comments (10)

Tapping the Governor's Phone

The devil is in the details and the revelations coming out of a 76-page indictment charging llinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich with essentially selling President-elect Barack Obama's now-vacant Senate seat are shocking, to say the least.

By Derek Kravitz | December 9, 2008; 12:39 PM ET | Comments (6)

Rezko Might Be Cooperating With Feds

Antoin "Tony" Rezko, the Chicago political influence peddler whose relationship with Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama has been a constant thorn in the Illinois senator's side, might be helping the government mount a corruption case against the state's governor.

By Derek Kravitz | September 30, 2008; 03:04 PM ET | Comments (33)


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