Saturday, December 13, 2008

Obama-Blagojevich Connections

The Saginaw News reports:
Chicago businessman Antoin "Tony" Rezko, convicted in June of a $7 million kickback operation, gave his support and lots of money to both Obama and Blagojevich. Obama is close to Illinois Senate President Emil Jones, a big Blagojevich legislative buddy. Michael Strautmanis, now an Obama aide, once worked for Blagojevich. Obama friend and transition team member Valerie Jarrett, soon to become a senior adviser, is called in court documents "Candidate 1" -- the person he wanted to have the Senate seat before giving her the White House post.
Who could forget Obama National Campaign Co-Chair Jesse Jackson Jr.? Who could forget Obama's strong endorsement of Blagojevich in this 2002 interview with Jeff Berkowitz :
State Senator Barack Obama (D-Chicago): …right now, my main focus is to make sure that we elect Rod Blagojevich as Governor, we—

Jeff Berkowitz: You working hard for Rod?

Barack Obama: You betcha.

Jeff Berkowitz: Hot Rod?

Barack Obama: That’s exactly right. You know, I think that having a Democratic Governor will make a big difference.
I think that I am working hard to get a Democratic [state] senate and Emil Jones President, replacing [Republican Senate President] Pate Philip and once all that clears out in November, then I think we’ll be able to make some good decisions about the [U. S.] Senate race.

Jeff Berkowitz: So, you want to see a Democratic State Senate, a Democratic State House, a Democratic Governor—

Barack Obama: I am a Democrat.

Jeff Berkowitz: Is that balanced? And I thought we wanted a fair and balanced approach to things.

Barack Obama: I am a Democrat.

Jeff Berkowitz: Card-carrying Democrat?

Barack Obama: Card-carrying Democrat. I really believe that the core Democratic philosophy is one that is—you know—really helps working people, and hopefully you know, we’ll be able to make sure that we carry out a mandate in this next election in November [2002].
Blagojevich and Obama's good friend Tony Rezko sure made a "difference".