A federal grand jury probing corruption under former Gov. Rod Blagojevich in the last two weeks has called witnesses to testify specifically about his wife, defense sources told the Chicago Sun-Times.
The recent questioning has centered in part on Patti Blagojevich’s real estate dealings and comes as the feds close in on an indictment involving the ex-governor and others.
You’d think she’d want to save herself, since her husband seems intent on going down in a brilliant, white-hot ball of flames.
The indictment has an April 7 deadline but could come Thursday — the day that grand jury meets.
What’s your over/under on the maximum number of prison years in the indictment? I figure since Chris Kelly is looking at something like 800 years, then RRB ought to at least be facing 10,000 years.
Do they even let you out of prison to be buried if you get that many years?
Defense lawyers said witnesses were questioned about Patti Blagojevich, her former firm, River Realty, and commissions she was paid on real estate deals involving political supporters, donors or state contractors. The former first lady took part in more than half a dozen real estate dealings with convicted businessman Tony Rezko, sources said.
* Meanwhile, Blagojevich had a “code name” for the Tribune/Wrigley Field deal: Project Elwood…
Early on a Sunday evening in December, e-mails went out among state officials who had just learned that financially strapped Tribune Co. was about to file for bankruptcy protection.
“This could measurably complicate Project Elwood,” wrote William Brandt, chairman of the Illinois Finance Authority. […]
Two days later, the plan grew far more complicated when Blagojevich was arrested on federal corruption charges. Among the charges were allegations that he was trying to extort Tribune Co.—the owner of Wrigley, the Cubs and the Chicago Tribune—over the state purchase.
The “plan grew far more complicated when Blagojevich was arrested” line is quite the understatement. But, hey, it’s the Trib reporting on Tribune Co.
So, was the governor calling in plays during games or something? Check this out…
Blagojevich’s telephone log shows several calls to members of the team, including manager Lou Piniella, coach Larry Rothschild and John McDonough, the team’s former president who is now with the Chicago Blackhawks
…Adding… Substitute “Mexico” or a country with no extradition treaty for “Chicago” and adjust the mileage accordingly, and perhaps this will be RRB and a friend come Thursday? The “real” Project Elwood perhaps? Just sayin…
* Rod Blagojevich indictment could bring more defendants - Former governor’s brother, wife and campaign committee, as well as lobbyist Lon Monk, are possible targets
I know it’s mean spirited, but remember as a kid how you would sit with siblings/friends and joyfully speculate what Santa might bring? Remember the fun that was? Let’s do that talking about how many years he/she spent in prison.
A cynicism developed beyond the early years and nurtured by people exactly like Blago.
@Southside Mike - The Penguin’s gotta be Quinn! “And don’t come back - Until you’ve redeemed yourselves….”
- Jake from Elwood - Tuesday, Mar 31, 09 @ 11:21 am:
First a disclaimer. Mr. Fitzgerald, I swear that I had nothing to do with this Blago-Tribune fiasco.
When I read this story the first thing I thought is now I have to come up with a new handle. Perhaps “Cinnamon Man” or “Secret Circle”. I obviously have to give it some thought, but my current penname has soured on me. Rats. Thanks alot Blago, you’ve screwed me over once again.
The Patti problem is the story of Chicago politics. If Rod got 6 figures, she should get 8 for a book deal. Consider who she is, and her family ties combined with the implications of flipping. Rod is gone, what else does she have to offer Fitz. He does not need her for a conviction. Convicting Patti, may make the go along spouses of crooked politicians have a moment of pause. She was operating a legitimate business as a front to launder proceeds from a criminal enterprise. This sounds like a RICO case to me. (life) This all goes back to who else is involved. Again, Rod is going to face 800 years(I’ll take the over) who who else can she give up. Will Patti take down the Machine? Will she go to prison for the rest of her life to protect Madigan, Daley, and Daddy?
Thank you, Todd Lighty and Robert Becker, for demonstrating to RRB what “testicular virility” really means. It takes real, honest-to-god courage to put your job on the line with a story like this. I can imagine that some editors at the Trib got some angry phone calls this morning. Well God love you guys for doing the right thing, and putting the people’s right to know ahead of your own careers.
- Phineas J. Whoopee - Tuesday, Mar 31, 09 @ 1:52 pm:
All this Patti stuff could have been avoided if Blago didn’t try his best to make a mockery out of the feds. Right after Rod was arrested, Patrick Collins stated in an interview on Chicago Tonight the feds really don’t want to go after her, saying she had no elected authority and probably wasn’t a target.
Blago brought this on his family, including his brother, by refusing to be cooperative. He is as unchivalrous a conman as has ever come down the Illinois political pipe.
In his insatiable self aggrandizing need for publicity and attention he has jeopardized the freedom of his wife and brother and brought about the possibility that his children will be missing both parents.
=How do these people (Patty and Rod) find each other?=
Patti had just broken up with a boyfriend when she met Rod. Prior to that, Rod was sniffing around a bunch of elected officials who had single daughters. If fast Eddy had a daughter, he’d be the father-in-law. A few pols told Rod to scram and stay away from thier daughters. He caught Patti on the rebound and Mell bought this guy hook line and sinker.
The bigger question in my mind is why didn’t she leave this goofball years agao?
I’m sorry about Mrs. B and the potential impact on her kids already and should she be indicted. By all accounts she is an excellent mom. This is truly sad.
On the other hand, what WAS she thinking. She is, after all, a skilled pol’s daughter and also bright by most accounts. Could she have been so imbued with Chicago Machine culture that she was incapable of seeing the huge risks she was taking in her real estate ventures. Or maybe she didn’t notice that the world is changing just a teensy bit in the area of government corruption We are all subject to distorted thinking and mistakes based on that thinking so maybe what we are seeing with both Mrs. B. and her husband is, sigh, greed and stupidity that seems, well, normal for those who live in and have been formed by Chicago Machine politics.