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Author Topic: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...  (Read 2381 times)

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Offline SilverTopic starter

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Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« on: December 09, 2008, 01:23:26 PM »
That's only the beginning of things in this matter. Here are a few links for the time being.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/12/09/illinois.governor/index.html

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2008/12/05/DI2008120502599.html


I would like to know what everyone else out there is thinking currently.

Offline Jefepato

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2008, 01:30:51 PM »
The only thing even remotely surprising about this is that I sort of expected him to appoint himself.

Really, anyone elected to public office in Illinois should just be jailed immediately.

Offline CassandraNova

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2008, 01:39:07 PM »
I'm actually happy to hear about it.  The reason we're hearing about it, of course, is that he was arrested.  That's the point; he tried to do something wrong, the FBI and judicial process got involved, and he is going to have his day in court.  That's so much better than the alternative, frankly.

Apparently, it was Rahm Emmanuel that blew the whistle on him in the first place.  So it doesn't look like there's any taint that stretches to the President-elect.

Offline SilverTopic starter

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2008, 01:40:10 PM »
I'm actually happy to hear about it.  The reason we're hearing about it, of course, is that he was arrested.  That's the point; he tried to do something wrong, the FBI and judicial process got involved, and he is going to have his day in court.  That's so much better than the alternative, frankly.

Apparently, it was Rahm Emmanuel that blew the whistle on him in the first place.  So it doesn't look like there's any taint that stretches to the President-elect.

Aye and that I am actually thankful for at least.

Offline Avi

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2008, 09:27:46 PM »
Obama's done a good job of distancing himself from this, so hopefully he won't get tarred with the same brush as Blagojevich.  This whole thing just reeks of ye olde style political corruption, and I'm glad the guy got caught.  Here's hoping he gets more than just a slap on the wrist.  Did he really think he could get away with it, even though he KNEW the police had been listening in on his phone calls as a part of ANOTHER investigation?  Seriously, the guy is a moron...
« Last Edit: December 10, 2008, 08:55:08 AM by aviationrox »

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2008, 10:34:59 PM »
Isn't Chicago politics the origin of the phrase 'Vote early and often'?  I'm glad they caught the guy, but I was appalled to hear this morning that he's back at the office.

Offline The Overlord

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2008, 12:30:43 AM »
I'm glad they caught the guy, but I was appalled to hear this morning that he's back at the office.

We'll see for how long. This was a grand screwup even for dirty Illinois politics.


The thing I'm not getting is how did this guy expect to pull this off, had he not been under surveillance?

Perhaps I'm missing something here, but federal and state seats are not just handed out or auctioned off, but go through a lengthy election process as we all very well know.

Did this guy just expect that someone would just show up in Obama's old office on Monday and nobody would question it? Perhaps there's a temp service that fills House and Senate seats that I don't know about? On the surface this looks like a Bill Engvall award...'Mr. Blagojevich...heeere's your sign.'

Offline Zakharra

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2008, 11:16:30 AM »
The thing I'm not getting is how did this guy expect to pull this off, had he not been under surveillance?

Perhaps I'm missing something here, but federal and state seats are not just handed out or auctioned off, but go through a lengthy election process as we all very well know.

Did this guy just expect that someone would just show up in Obama's old office on Monday and nobody would question it? Perhaps there's a temp service that fills House and Senate seats that I don't know about? On the surface this looks like a Bill Engvall award...'Mr. Blagojevich...heeere's your sign.'


 When a Senator or Representative leaves office before his/her time, whether through illness, death, retirement, resignation or going to the Presidency, the governor can replace that official without a election. That obviously can differ from state to state, depending on the State's constitution.

 In this case in Illinois, the Governor has the authority to appoint a replacement for Obama. Having a special election would be a unlawful act.

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #8 on: December 11, 2008, 11:23:42 AM »
However, the way he's going about it, basically asking for some kind of 'reward' in exchange for giving someone the seat, is patently unethical.  That's why the state legislature wants to pass a law allowing a special election.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #9 on: December 11, 2008, 01:58:36 PM »
 Unethical as hell and illegal. That's effectively a bribe to get the seat. The problem is he can appoint someone as long as he is still in office.

Offline SilverTopic starter

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2008, 02:12:46 PM »
Unethical as hell and illegal. That's effectively a bribe to get the seat. The problem is he can appoint someone as long as he is still in office.

That much is true but the senate can reject anyone who he appoints. Also there are goings on currently trying to take away his power to even appoint anyone.

Offline Mathim

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2008, 03:33:01 PM »
Frankly I think he might have been threatened or set up and just had to take the blame either way. No better way to take attention away from corruption of the worst sort and at the highest level than letting a scapegoat take a fall and let everyone's anger and hatred shift over to them instead.

Offline Avi

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2008, 04:10:45 PM »
There was no love lost between Blagojevich and Obama, though.  It's clear that he only thought of Obama as a political tool and his seat as a resource for self-improvement.  I doubt there is some grand conspiracy, unless it's a coalition of the idiotic.

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2008, 11:54:09 AM »
Now he's pretending like there's nothing happening, even as the Illinois State Legislature is drawing up articles of impeachment.  How arrogant can he get?

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2008, 12:17:07 PM »
I think pretending nothing happened is a required part of the pre-impeachment process.  Has he asked his accusers to define 'is' yet? 

Offline Zakharra

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2008, 12:40:52 PM »
 He's an Illinois politician.  ::)

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2008, 09:33:32 AM »
I was seriously thinking about this did he commit a crime? As far as I can tell he cursed on the phone, wanted something for the appointment and never signed anything or took money for it which is likely required for a crime to be commited.

Its like in the movie Elizabeth the crime of treason wasn't commited until the lord guy SIGNED the incriminating document. Is there any written commitment for a private company, him taking money that can be proven if there isn't he was just being bitchy and prissy that is NOT a crime under the law as far as I can tell. And having middle men who may or may not have been acting for him without the governor realistically implicated with clear evidence is not a crime either that warrants impeachment.

A person does have fundamental free speech rights to bitch and whine that is the American way.


Offline Maeven

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2008, 10:03:30 AM »
I was seriously thinking about this did he commit a crime? As far as I can tell he cursed on the phone, wanted something for the appointment and never signed anything or took money for it which is likely required for a crime to be commited.

Its like in the movie Elizabeth the crime of treason wasn't commited until the lord guy SIGNED the incriminating document. Is there any written commitment for a private company, him taking money that can be proven if there isn't he was just being bitchy and prissy that is NOT a crime under the law as far as I can tell. And having middle men who may or may not have been acting for him without the governor realistically implicated with clear evidence is not a crime either that warrants impeachment.

A person does have fundamental free speech rights to bitch and whine that is the American way.

He solicited a bribe in exchange for a senate seat. Yes, it's a crime.  Just like attempted murder, possession with intent to sell, conspiracy to commit X crime.  You don't have to actually do the deed to be arrested for it.  

That being said. I am a little disappointed that the authorities didn't allow the appointment to take place and then bust everyone involved ... but that's politics.  There are some heavy hitters involved in this thing that we'll never hear about.  Blagojevich just happens to be the one who's taking the fall.  And, I don't think his fall will be a long one since he's sure to have lots of dirty laundry in his back pocket as leverage. 

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2008, 10:08:23 AM »
In Elizabethan times, the signature was basically used as proof of intent.  In this case, the recorded phone conversations that everyone's talking about would be the proof of intent.

I've seen similar evidence used in murder-for-hire cases, where an undercover cop plays the potential hit-man, or when someone wears a wire.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2008, 10:13:40 AM »
Yes but did they catch himn ACCEPTING a hard offer for the seat? I heard the same tapes and he was bitching and whining and cursing that he wanted something for it that is different than say meeting a company CEO and on tape clearly agreeing to a deal for the seat for something.

Did he take a bribe tha tis key if he was just bitching that he WANTED something for an appointment to no one in particular then its not the same thing in my mind.

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Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2008, 10:28:58 AM »
If he's whining to the people that are 'candidates' for the appointment, then the implication is that 'if you give me something, then it will improve your chances.  If he's whining to uninvolved people (non-candidates), then it's a little more gray.  It's enough to give the appearance of impropriety, which is probably what the indictment is based on.  An indictment is not a verdict - there is a far lower burden of proof to get an indictment.

Of course, his defense will probably bring up exactly the points you have, and it will be up to the jury (or judge if it's a bench trial) if it rises to the level of solicitation. 

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2008, 02:43:25 PM »
If it were me I would wait until he got a firm offer and a senator was chosen and then let the sword fall on both of them, right now I just don't see a real case. Anyway isn't he up for reelection I say let the voters decide in the voting box next election if they don't like him.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Blagojevich tried to sell Obama's Senate seat...
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2008, 06:56:27 PM »
 In his case, the intent to sell the seat is enough for a indictment and he's going to pay one way or another. At the least, his reputation is seriously tarnished.