Just say Blag-no
Just say Blag-no
I'm surprised this story has not received more attention -- but if what ABC's George Stephanopoulos (I know, I know) is reporting is true, then Team Obama comes out of the Blago mess...well, maybe not so much "smelling like a rose" as "smelling like a rose that came into contact with the stench of Chicago politics":
Sources tell me that the Obama team's review of contacts with Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich will show that Rahm Emanuel had only one phone conversation with Blagojevich.
The contact, described as a "pro-forma" courtesy call, came as Emanuel was named Chief of Staff for Obama. Most of the discussion concerned Emanuel's Congressional seat (which had previously been held by Blagojevich), with only a "passing reference" to the Senate vacancy, according to these sources. No deal for the Senate vacancy was discussed.
There's more about four phone calls with Blagojevich's chief of staff:
Sources also confirm that Emanuel made the case for picking Obama confidante Valerie Jarrett during at least one of the conversations. In the course of that conversation, Harris asked if in return for picking Jarrett, "all we get is appreciation, right?" "Right," Emanuel responded.
So it sounds remarkably positive from the Team Obama perspective -- sure, he had a preferred candidate for his old job (so might you, if you were promoted) but had no interest in dealing to get someone and was more worried about appearances, given Blago's already embattled state. If this proves true, it makes some of last week's hyperventilating coverage seem more than a tad silly. Didn't one article claim there were 21 phone calls? Jeez.