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Merry Fitzmas! Trib says Wyma helping the G

Friday, Dec 5, 2008 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Man, if Wyma has flipped, is there anyone at all whom the governor can trust?

Federal investigators recently made covert tape recordings of Gov. Rod Blagojevich in the most dramatic step yet in their corruption investigation of him and his administration, the Tribune has learned.

As part of this undercover effort, one of the governor’s closest confidants and former aides cooperated with investigators, and that assistance helped lead to recordings of the governor and others, sources said.

The cooperation of John Wyma, 42, one of the state’s most influential lobbyists, is the most stunning evidence yet that Blagojevich’s once-tight inner circle appears to be collapsing under the pressure of myriad pay-to-play inquiries.

We’re talking about one of the governor’s very closest political and personal friends here. This ain’t no low-level guy.

* Did they get this meeting on tape?

Wyma, Blagojevich’s chief of staff when he was in Congress, has long been one of the few advisers trusted by Blagojevich and kept in the loop on matters of policy and politics. As the federal probe intensified, Wyma met privately with the governor and his former chief of staff at the governor’s campaign headquarters on the North Side for 90 minutes on Oct. 22.

Confronted outside that meeting, Wyma declined to talk to Tribune reporters about what the meeting was about before jumping into his car. The next day, the Tribune was the first to report that Wyma’s name appeared in a federal subpoena delivered to Provena Health, a former client of his.

Blagojevich might’ve been comfortable enough in that meeting to say anything. Oof.

…Adding… Lon Monk was the “former chief of staff” listed as attending that campaign headquarters meeting in today’s Trib article. Some background on Provena and that meeting can be found at this link

Pushing further into Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s inner circle, federal investigators have subpoenaed records involving a lobbyist friend who represented a hospital company that won a favorable state ruling.

The company’s for-profit affiliate donated $25,000 to Blagojevich’s campaign a month after the state’s action.

John Wyma, a top fundraiser and former Blagojevich aide, was named in a federal subpoena delivered two weeks ago to Provena Health, according to sources. It sought records about Provena’s lobbying relationship with Wyma, the donation and the company’s efforts to win approval for a new heart program. […]

On Wednesday, Wyma met for about 90 minutes with the governor and another fundraiser and state lobbyist, Lon Monk, at Blagojevich’s political offices on the North Side. When asked after the meeting about the subpoena, Wyma said, “I have no comment.”

Monk, who was Blagojevich’s chief of staff during his first term, also declined to comment.

Doug Scofield, a spokesman for the Friends of Blagojevich campaign committee, described the meeting as “routine.”

“I don’t think anything big happened,” he said.

Lisa Lagger, a spokesman for Provena Health, said, “We are not parties of interest here.”

If Provena isn’t a “party of interest,” then that might leave at least two others: The guy who solicited the standard $25,000 contribution and the guy who accepted it.

* Anyway, here’s more background

Wyma, 42, now a top lobbyist, has also been named in a federal subpoena delivered to Provena Health, a former client of his.

The subpoena sought records about Provena’s relationship with Wyma, the hospital’s efforts to win state approval of a new heart program and a $25,000 donation the company’s for-profit affiliate gave to Blagojevich’s campaign fund, the newspaper reported.

Wyma had no comment about the story.

Wyma doesn’t lobby the General Assembly much at all. He mainly uses his exclusive access to Gov. Blagojevich to make money.

* This story from a year ago might help explain some things as well…

Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s wife received the real estate commission in a $650,000 condominium sale from a businessman who since has won $10 million in no-bid state contracts.

The seller was Mark T. Wight, owner of Wight & Company, an architecture firm that won three new contracts with the state’s toll highway authority after the 2005 sale. The buyer was John R. Wyma, Wight’s tollway lobbyist and a longtime Blagojevich insider.

The governor might wanna make that US Senate appointment before it’s too late.

Just sayin’.

* Meanwhile

In another development, FBI agents searched two Joliet businesses owned by Harish Bhatt, a longtime Blagojevich supporter.

Agents descended upon Basinger and Essington pharmacies early in the morning and combed through paperwork. The FBI would only say it’s part of an ongoing federal investigation.

Bhatt told reporters agents weren’t looking into him, adding, “We have nothing to do with it.”

Last year, the Tribune named Bhatt as being part of an ongoing investigation into Blagojevich’s administration. The paper reported state police were looking into whether Bhatt solicited campaign donations in exchange for state favors.

Bhatt and Blagojevich go back years. Bhatt has raised thousands of dollars for the governor. And just this year, another Blagojevich fundraiser, Antoin “Tony” Rezko, was convicted on pay-to-play corruption charges.

* More from the Joliet Herald News, which broke the story yesterday…

Rice said the warrant was connected to “an ongoing federal investigation,” but would not disclose details on what the agents were looking into.

Both the complaints and warrants were under seal, Rice said.

* The Sun-Times is not so sure this is related

It appeared, however, that the feds’ visit to Bhatt’s pharmacies was not connected to the Blagojevich probe. “They are looking into somebody else,” Bhatt said Thursday. “We have nothing to do with it.”

Bhatt would not disclose whom the feds were interested in, saying agents asked him to be quiet.

We’ll all know soon enough.

* More bckground on Blagojevich and Bhatt is here.

A photo of Blagojevich and Bhatt…

And here’s one of Wyma [center] and Blagojevich in Texas from back in August. They apparently held a funder down there…


  1. - Anonymous - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:13 am:

    arrogance and ignorance when combined can be truly devastating…

  2. - Waco Kid - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:13 am:

    Merry Fitzmas is outstanding.

  3. - OneMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:13 am:

    Is the Over/Under now December 15th?

    Also any thoughts if this was leaked to send a message to Tony?

  4. - Levois - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:14 am:

    It’s a hot mess!

  5. - Rich Miller - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:15 am:

    ===Is the Over/Under now December 15th? ===

    I’m figuring before Jan. 20th. Patience, please.

  6. - Say WHAT? - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:17 am:

    Just what I always wanted!!! Fitzmas! Its the most wonderful time of the year.

  7. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:20 am:

    Bill, pack your bags for DC, bro.

  8. - Michael Corleone - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:21 am:

    This is the same as if Tom Hagen had flipped on me!

  9. - Michael Corleone - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:21 am:

    I wonder if his wife is cooperating too?

  10. - bored now - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:22 am:

    i have three words: governor pat quinn. doesn’t that make you feel better?

  11. - Pat collins - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:26 am:

    Agents descended upon Basinger and Essington pharmacies early in the morning and combed through paperwork

    So, if at a time when the state is paying all it’s medical providers very late, they paid this guy in full and in less than 30 days, would that be illegal?

  12. - Rich Miller - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:26 am:

    ===Also any thoughts if this was leaked to send a message to Tony? ===

    If it was leaked, it sends a message to a whole host of people, not just Tony.

  13. - Chris Kelly, the Train Is Leaving - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:29 am:

    Better get on board.

  14. - One of the 35 - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:29 am:

    This just has to be one big misunderstanding. Governor Blagojevich assured us he would not put up with “business as usual”!

  15. - Anon - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:32 am:

    Anybody know where the Governor is this morning?

    In Laski’s book, he re-counted his initial “meeting” with prosecutors. who had apparently leaked the story to the Sun Times that his top assistant (I can’t remember his name) had worn a wire on him. The put Laski in a conference room, where a copy of the paper was conspicuously left on the table — together with a pile of cassette tapes (if I’m remembering it right).

    I’m guessing that this Tribune story is to be used similarly.

    Interesting how they don’t say how the meeting was taped. Only that it was taped. But they are clearly trying to convey the impression that Wyma was wearing a wire. Likely two related, but unconnected things: (1) Wyma is cooperating and (2) the meeting was taped.

    Psychological ops, 219 style.

  16. - wordslinger - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:33 am:

    One would assume that like Fast Eddie, Blago has operated for some time under the assumption that everyone’s wired. But still, we know what happened to Fast Eddie…..

    Could that condo deal have been any more heavy-handed? Did someone consider it clever? Didn’t these guys realize they were under a microscope.

  17. - 47th Ward - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:33 am:

    Thanks for posting the photo Rich. It reminds me of how much I’ll enjoy watching Fitzgerald wipe that goofy smile off the governor’s face once and for all. Can’t happen soon enough.

  18. - Just My Opinion - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:37 am:

    Where’s the governor this morning? He’s looking for the kitty. Definitely an “UP” day for Blago.

  19. - Little Egypt - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:38 am:

    It’s nice to see Blago getting some press today.

  20. - Lake Voter - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:39 am:

    Madigan’s plans are moving along quite nicely. The Gov gets indicted before the GA starts work in February. (Still have the Obama love fest in DC during January) There will be talk of a “Special Committee” to look into impeachment in the mean time. When the Gov gets indicted Madigan whacks him with an impeachment vote in the house. Cullerton takes care of the rest in the senate and we then have Gov. Pat “I’ll vote for a tax increase” Quinn. The majority leaders pass the tax increase by the deadline in May (retroactive to January 1 of course). Two years from now Little Madigan gets a state that is not in such financial trouble. Oh the best laid plans!

  21. - BandCamp - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:40 am:

    Bill??? Please. The Governor needs your positive reinforcement right now…

    I bet we all look stupid wearing these tinfoil hats, which I’m sure are blinding Bill and giving him a headache.

  22. - GA Watcher - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:41 am:

    Blago could have been a contenda. What a waste!

  23. - The Right to Counsel - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:42 am:

    Will Winston & Strawn represent Rod personally?

    If they do, doesn’t the whole George Ryan experience make them urge Rod to take a plea deal?

  24. - Bill Baar - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:44 am:

    Not many pictures of Wyma out there…thanks Rich.

  25. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:47 am:

    Patti, take him off the Christmas card list now!

  26. - South Side Mike - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:49 am:

    Heck, not only might Blago might make someone a Senator for Christmas this year, he might also make someone a Governor!

    If Blago appointed Quinn to the seat, who would get the Governorship?

  27. - ChiCountryGuy - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:50 am:

    Blago is unpredictable and unstable but somewhere in the back of my mind I have to think he is at the point of frisking people (not personally, that’s why he has staff) or lifting their shirts to check for wires, friends or not.

  28. - OneMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:52 am:

    South Side Mike

    Lisa Madigan.

  29. - The Unlicensed Hand Surgeon - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:53 am:

    So if we’re openly throwing out dates as to when an indictment might come down, then is it appropriate to discuss whether or not the gov would step down if indicted? I don’t know any of the insider stuff beyond what I read in the papers, but it appears that many of you think that it’s only a matter of time now.

  30. - Speaking at Will - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:55 am:

    Probably not a day for sympathy, god knows I have been unmerciful on Blagojevich over the last few years, along with everyone else. However these kind of things always bring mixed emotions.

    Blago going away will be the best thing that ewver happened to Illinois, but I still feel for his children and, the innocent bystanders in all of this politically screwed up mess.

    With all that said, I hope Blago goes the Jim Laski route and writes a tell all book while in the clink. Now that would be a best seller.

  31. - Boscobud - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:58 am:

    Out of all the Governors Illinois has had how many have gone to jail? Or how many have had legal problems?

  32. - The Unlicensed Hand Surgeon - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 9:58 am:

    Speaking at Will, if you’ve already got him in the clink, then I guess my question isn’t untimely.

  33. - carbon deforestation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:00 am:

    Totally shocking, and a huge bombshell of a story.

    But then again, I have met Wyma and my first impression told me not to ever trust the guy. Apparently, G-Rod didn’t get that same vibe.

    One of the 35 - funniest comment of the morning!

    This is far more shocking than the Ali Ata testimony, which was believable too of course.

    Finally Rod Blagojevich’s dream can come true. His life story will very closely resemble that of a man he once idolized - Richard M. Nixon!

  34. - South Side Mike - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:00 am:

    Thanks, OneMan. Well, that scenario would throw a wrench into Lake Voter’s Mike Madigan scenario. Making Lisa be the public face who has to cut services and raise taxes could be the one single blow that Blago has left that could derail the Madigan dream.

    Unlicensed, I don’t see the Governor stepping down for an indictment, only a conviction or impeachment. And to prevent an impeachment, I could see him trying to get a Canadian-style adjournment of the legislature. We know he’s a fan of Canadian pharmaceuticals; why not their governance?

  35. - Cassandra - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:03 am:

    I thought Winston/Strawn had been advising our Blago all along, since very early in his administration when “problems” began to arise.

    Now, surely he has been paying attention to some of this extremely expensive advice. There is something missing here. And I wouldn’t be too sure he’d be going away from the guv’s office either.
    Would the Legislature have the oomph to impeach him. My guess is, he’d stay and fight it out.

    Also interesting in the plight of the youthful Mr. Wyma. Did he overreach himself in his rush to make a fortune. A young man in too much of a hurry? Maybe he needs to found a charity….fast.

  36. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    How many times do you think the tape recorder got the in-office toilet flushing?

  37. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    Winston & Strawn is no longer representing POA.

  38. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:15 am:

    LOOK! Here comes Andy Williams!
    he’s still alive!

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year
    As Blago’s rap sheet is swelling
    The GOP is telling you “This is the year!”
    It’s the most wonderful time of the year

    It’s the hap-happiest season of all
    With those fund raising greetings and lawyerly meetings
    When friends flip and tell all
    It’s the hap- happiest season of all!

    There’ll be subpoenas for posting
    As our government goes coasting
    And flailing out of control,
    We’ll hear scary kickback stories
    As witnesses tell of the gories of
    State plane rides from long, long ago

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year
    For Obama’s seat Jackson’s shilling,
    And empty accounts still need filling
    As Tax Day draws near
    It’s the most wonderful time of the year

    A Governor needs impeaching,
    Reformers will be preaching,
    While the GOP is out in the snow
    There’ll be scary jail stories
    Durbin tries to sell Bush clemency glories as
    Dick describes poor George’s woe!

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year
    There’ll be much mistltoeing
    And hearts will be glowing
    As Blagojevich’s end seems so near
    It’s the most wonderful time
    It’s the most wonderful time
    It’s the most wonderful time
    It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

  39. - Vote Quimby! - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:17 am:

    I’ll not be home for Fitzmas
    You can’t count on me
    Please have Rezko and MOUs
    And ($25000) checks under the tree

    Christmas Eve will find me
    Where the spotlight beams
    I’ll be home for Fitzmas
    But ONLY in my dreams!

  40. - Vote Quimby! - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:18 am:

    …just in time to have VMan make my sonnet a piece of crap :-)

  41. - Boscobud - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:23 am:

    VMan that was great.

  42. - S. Illinois - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:24 am:

    V-Man, that’s your best effort yet!

  43. - Secret Square - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:27 am:


    Three. Otto Kerner in the early 70s, for charges related to a racetrack scandal; Dan Walker, in the late 80s, for S &L financial stuff that happened AFTER he left the governor’s office; and, of course, George Ryan.
    All three were out of office when they went to prison; and I believe all three were imprisoned for things they did either before or after they were governor, NOT during their terms.

  44. - Pat collins - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:28 am:

    I like yours much better, Quimby.

    God Rest ye Merry Prosecutors
    let no one you indict
    for I must make a Senator this Christmas night
    To save me from the Fed’s power
    When I was gone astray
    O tidings of comfort and joy,
    Comfort and joy
    O tidings of comfort and joy

  45. - scoot - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:30 am:

    I hope Madigan & Cullerton put serious thought into impeachment this spring.

  46. - Lake Voter - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:32 am:

    South Side Mike,

    Not enough coffee in the system to play the game out that far. Your scenario would be an absolute hoot. The Gov has such a me against them persona that he just couldn’t get himself to resign. Now I would like to believe he would fall on the sword for his wife should she get indicted. Then a Quinn to Senate and AG to Gov may work. This would all have to play out in the next few weeks which is improbable as it gets.

  47. - Secret Square - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:36 am:

    My list is just the governors who have gone to prison. At least two others (Len Small and William Stratton) were acquitted of criminal charges. And many more, of course, probably had legal problems of some kind.

  48. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:37 am:

    Maybe VM could come up with something along the lines of “Chestnusts roasting over an open subpena”

    Or “Jingle Snitches”

    Or better yet, a choir singing “O Holy Crap”

    O Holy Crap!
    The Feds are sqeezing tightly,
    It is the year of Rezko’s mighty fall.
    Cellini is in trouble, who else is next?
    Official A, having trouble sleeping,
    Never leaves his home.

    Fall on your knees
    O hear Fitzgerald’s voice
    “O indict tonight!”

  49. - Little Egypt - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:45 am:

    Just because Blago appoints Bill to fill the last 2 years of Obama’s term, does that mean Bill has to accept? (or anyone else for that matter)

  50. - Secret Square - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:46 am:

    Why don’t we just have a “write your own Fitzmas carol” contest at a later date as a QOTD?

  51. - wordslinger - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:49 am:

    Have yourself a Merry Little Fitzmas,
    Tape it all on tight,
    From now on, keep the wire safely out of sight.

    Have yourself a Merry Little Fitzmas,
    there’s a price to pay,
    for all those years banking millions from the pay to play

    Here we are as in olden days,
    Federales play, at our gov’s door
    Faithful friends who were dear to him,
    Now sing of him, and his big scores

    Through the years,
    he held it all together,
    now the feds have vowed,
    to send him up the river in a garbage scow,
    Still, have yourself a Merry Little Fitzmas, somehow

  52. - Boscobud - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:49 am:

    Secret Square,

    Thank you, my husband and I were talking about that last night, and we felt like it was nothing new to have a gov go to jail. I guess we were right.

    Thank You

  53. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:54 am:

    And Rich could recruit IL’s finest and also-ran recording artists (think about it! Buddy Guy, Wilco, Chaka Khan, Kanye West, Styx, REO Speedwagon) to record the best of the lot next year for the Capitol Fax Fitzmas CD.

  54. - RobRoy - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:54 am:

    I’m thinking that Madigan does not want to expend the time, energy and distraction on an impeachemnt. He’s game planned the session and Blago has been rendered nearly a non-factor.

  55. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:57 am:

    Vanilla Man,

    It appears you have a dynamite sound. But I’m telling you, you’re gonna want more cowbell.

  56. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:59 am:

    My chestnuts are roasting on an open fire,
    As Fitzgerald is giving me griefs,
    Former friends have sung to the Feds,
    I see myself wearing prison briefs.

    Everybody knows I’m a turkey who has to go,
    Although Quinn, I consider to be half-bright.
    I’ll name Obama’s replacement when I see the dough,
    I could name myself and I might.

    They’ve sent Barack on his way;
    He’s over his head and everyone gotta pray.
    And so will I, I’m gonna try,
    To see if he’ll pardon me before I’m sent to fry.

    And so I’m offering this simple phrase,
    To kids from one to ninety-two,
    Although I’ve claimed many times, many ways,
    I’ve always fought for each of you!

  57. - South Side Mike - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:02 am:

    Little Blago Boy

    Vote for me, I said, pa rum pum pum pum,
    I’m not like Ryan, I said, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Reform is what I’ll bring, pa rum pum pum pum,
    While listening to the King, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
    You can trust me, pa rum pum pum pum,
    (Though if you do you’re dumb.)

    Cash, I told them, pa rum pum pum pum,
    I also take birthday checks, pa rum pum pum pum,
    I’ll appoint you to the Board, pa rum pum pum pum,
    I’ll always be adored, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
    Pay to play, I said, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Don’t be dumb.

    Madigan loathes me, pa rum pum pum pum,
    He talks real mean to me, pa rum pum pum pum,
    For revenge I will try, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Special sessions in July, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
    At least Emil’s got my back, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Boy, is he dumb.

    Fitz is after me, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Rezko’s already gone, pa rum pum pum pum,
    I hope Wyna didn’t sing, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Or this house down he’ll bring, pa rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum, rum pum pum pum,
    I thought I was scot free, pa rum pum pum pum,
    Boy am I dumb.

  58. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:07 am:

    Rich, you really need a Blago/Christmas carol section. Too much talent to squander in this little piece of heaven.

  59. - South Side Mike - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:07 am:

    Secret Square (@ 10:46),

    I think this thread has turned into an unofficial version of that. So far, I like Vanilla Man’s Chestnuts and Wordslinger’s “Merry Little Fitzmas.” I think Word’s got a slight edge, but it’s close.

  60. - Amy - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:21 am:

    tell all of Blago’s administration to get on board the snitch train….

    and god bless them one and all.

  61. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:30 am:

    Blago The Snowman

    Blago the Snowman, was a grumpy worried soul.
    With a hairdo made of spray, a button nose, and ethics made of coal.
    Blago the Snowman is a Fairytale they say.
    He was made of promise, but the citizens knew he came to life one day.
    There must have been some magic in that old silk money bag they found.
    For when they placed it in his hand, he began to jump around.
    Oh, Blago the Snowman, was as arrogant as he could be.
    And the citizens say he could fix anything for a $25,000 fee.

    Thumpy thump, thump, thumpty thump thump, look at Blago go.
    Thumpty thump, thump, thumpty thump thump, over the piles of dough!

    Blago the Snowman, knew the heat was on one day,
    so he said, “I have nothing to fear but the truth”, I must run away!
    Down to the village, with an subpoena in his hand,
    Running here, and there, all around the square,
    sayin’ “Catch me if you can”
    He led them down the streets of finacial ruin, right to the Traffic Cop.,
    And only paused for a second when he heard Fitzy Yell “STOP”
    But Blago the Snowman, had to hurry on his way,
    But he waved goodbye, sayin’ “Don’t cry…you voted me back!”

  62. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:32 am:

    Dashing through the air
    In a Super King Air plane
    Off to Philly we go,
    Laughing all the way;
    Calls from contributors ring,
    Making spirits bright,
    What fun it is to ride and sing
    A flying song tonight
    Jingle *, jingle *,
    Jingle all the way!
    O what fun it is to ride
    In a Super King Air plane

    *For that which is “virile”

  63. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:32 am:

    The Blago and Ryan Duet!

    Prison chains, prison chains, hit the big rock
    Prison chains swing and prison chains ring
    Hitting a slag heap is a barrel of fun
    Now that my prison sentence has begun

    Prison chains, prison chains, hit the big rock
    Prison chains chime as I serve my big time
    Me and George are dancing and hustling for smokes
    In the shower stalls.

    What a swell time, we see it as an “up!” time,
    To show our tats that way
    Prison shower time is a swell time
    To go gliding on a ‘one-horse sleigh’

    Hurry up Georgie!, pick up your feet
    Hustle yur wrinkles ’round the block
    The other guys are tinglin’ and think that you’re sweet

    We’re the former govs,
    Who turned out as flubs,
    In a prison we tried to close!

  64. - Secret Square - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:33 am:

    There is also potential here for a Dickens “Christmas Carol” remake with the Ghosts of Illinois Corruption Past attempting (unsuccessfully) to get Scrooge/Blago to change his ways.

    Or, “It’s a Wonderful Life” with Blago’s guardian angel showing him how Illinois would be today had he never been elected.

    Perhaps the Blago and Ryan administrations both represent a “Pottersville” style alternate universe in which Glenn Poshard didn’t get elected governor :)

  65. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:35 am:


    I deciphered that as to the tune of “Jingle Bell Rock”…right?

  66. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:37 am:

    Yeah, in the “Wonderful Life remake”, the little girl could say:

    “Mommy says, evertyime a bell rings, it means a Contractor has decided to pay-to-play!”

  67. - Bill - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:40 am:

    To all of the gleeful carolers:
    Bite me.

  68. - HearMeRoar - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:41 am:

    Come on, Bill. Write us a song!

  69. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:42 am:

    Now that’s not the proper attitude for a possible Senator Bill. After all, we are supporting you for the Blago appointment. Don’t tick off your supportors.

  70. - wordslinger - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:43 am:

    Bill, what does it have to do with you?

  71. - 2ConfusedCrew - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:46 am:

    Secret Square:
    You forgot to mention Jim Edgar*( ya need the asterik caused he dropped out before the MSI case really matured)
    The G would have got him if he had stayed on

  72. - train111 - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:49 am:

    On the 12th day of Fitzmas Blago gave to me:

    12 kegs of hair gel
    11 denials
    10 angry outbursts
    9 orange jumpsuits
    8 conjugal visits
    7 clemecny hearings
    6 lisensce plates
    5 soaps on rope
    4 illicit smokes
    3 phone calls
    2 MOU’s
    and a huge long appeal


  73. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:52 am:


    Your song needs more lyrics, and more cowbell. And as you have said before, I am seldom wrong.

  74. - soccermom - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:56 am:

    Unfortunately, Bill’s comment was taken out of context by unfriendly, biased, “gotcha” media. I believe that soon-to-be Senator Bill meant to say that he hopes all of you enjoy prosperity, feasting and joy during the coming holidays, and that he wishes only the best to every family in Illinois.

  75. - 10th Indy - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 11:56 am:

    And Lisa M. chimes in:

    Fitzy baby, just slip a summons under Rod’s tree, for me
    Been an awful good girl
    Fitzy baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight

    Fitzy baby, a 54 page indictment too, would do
    I’ll wait up for you dear Fitzy baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight

    Think of all the payouts that I’ve missed
    Think of all the donors that I haven’t kissed
    Next year I could be just as good
    If you could put my rivals on the witness list
    Boo doo bee doo

  76. - Bill - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:00 pm:

    That’s exactly right. What soccermom said.

  77. - Rich Miller - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:01 pm:

    The learning curve is slow but steady, eh Bill?

  78. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:05 pm:

    Topinka and Poshard as Christmas Carol Ghosts duet based on “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”

    Picture yourself in a state with a surplus,
    Where health care providers are paid out on time.
    We’re the good ones voted down in November,
    Judy’s accordian plays ‘Spanish Eyes’.

    Ethical reforms and landscapes of green,
    The Budgets not over our head.
    Look for the gov with the Mile High Hair,
    But he’s gone!

    We were the governors you denied,
    Judy was the one that tried,
    Glenn was the one that plagerized,
    Ah… Ah…

    {VERSE 2}
    Follow us down to Buckingham Fountain,
    Far enough from a door so that she can light up.
    Everyone smiles as you drift through the Loop,
    Where Pay-To-Play was finally disrupt.

    President Obama appears above Lake Shore,
    Making all pain go away.
    You open your tax bill, but nothings inside,
    George Soros has just made your day.

    We were the good ones you denied,
    Judy was the one that tried,
    Glenn was the one that plagerized,
    Ah… Ah…

    Picture yourself in a state with a surplus,
    Where health care providers are paid on time.
    We’re the good ones voted down in November,
    Wearing an accordian playing ‘Spanish Eyes’.

  79. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:08 pm:


    A good artist knows when to quit.

  80. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:11 pm:

    Yeah, but according to Santa, I’m not good.

  81. - jaundiced eye - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:15 pm:

    This is perhaps the best topic/exchange of wit (and snark) set to music in the history of the Capitol Fax blog. Congratulations to all — and a recommendation that the Chicago Bar Assn. shelf their holiday show til next year and just sing all of today’s parodies.

  82. - Justice - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:22 pm:

    You would think the gov would be dragging a branch every where he went, but it appears that arrogance rules the day……yes, and outright stupidity. Doesn’t appear to be too long before the feds will meet him as he exits his state plane and provide him a rousing and heart felt rendition of Bars and Stripes!

  83. - anon - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:45 pm:

    May I please inject some sanity into this discussion to remind commenters that nobody knows what has been taped. If it happens to be the meeting on the 22nd, it could be 90 minutes of Wyma and Blagojevich talking about Elvis and sports. Not out of the realm of possibility.

    Is it possible that the feds have a political motive in leaking this vague story?

    Whats really pathetic is how the newspapers report it. A sentence or two on the existence of a tape of the gov, followed by proclamations on how this paper was the first to break this part of the story, or that paper was the first to break that oart of the story. A pathetic sound of one blowing their own horn.

  84. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 12:52 pm:


    If the call that the Gov made to MSNBC is any indication, there is a lot of toilets flushing in the background.

  85. - Bill - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 1:00 pm:

    Thank you anon for your cogent and salient comment. If, for the sake of argument only, there was something untoward or incriminating on the tape do you really think the feds would be blabbing about it to the Tribune. This death by 1000 cuts approach is a typical tactic of the current occupiers of the USA office. They’re fishing. This irrational exhuberance is by the CapFax Hater Chorus is premature to say the least.

  86. - Michael Corleone - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 1:07 pm:


    If the Feds have Wyma wearing a wire, there is no way they would every let that fact be disclosed unless/until said recordings had already delivered the goods.

    Whether on the 22nd or some other date, I’d bet the store they have the goods on tape, or this would not have leaked

  87. - Just My Opinion - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 1:43 pm:

    Will one of you lyricmeisters please rewrite the lyrics to “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer”? I don’t have near the talent that some of you do and that’s just a sentimental favorite song of mine (sniff, sniff).

  88. - MOON - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 1:46 pm:

    Quit all the speculation! Without a doubt the tapes will help do in Blago!

    Do you think for one minute Wyma would wear a recorder if Fitz did not have the goods on Wyma, and Wyma knew he could help himself by recording the conversations with Blago.

    I have been saying for some time that the real estate deal between Wyma and Wight stunk to high heaven. Also I think ,and have said before , something will happen between now and 1/20/09 as far as Blago and his “appointment with Fitz.”

  89. - Fan of the Game - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 1:52 pm:

    It’s a dilemma. If Gov. Balgojevich is guilty of that which he has been hinted, he should be removed from office. But it would still be a sad day for the State of Illinois.

  90. - Larry Mullholland - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:02 pm:

    Gang, I have many very personal reasons to be gleeful & hateful about today’s Blago news; I enjoyed the first half of the Christmas cheer in this post but then the sad hard cold reality began to set in…

    There is yet again an Illinois Governor facing serious legal trouble. It’s an embarrassment for all Illinoisans. It is yet another sad chapter in our corrupt history. I cannot be gleeful. Sorry to rain on your parade.

  91. - Speaking At Will - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:05 pm:

    Vanilla Man

    Just wanted to let you know that I just read your Blago the snowman song on the air down here in Southern Illinois. Its a listener favorite!

  92. - OneMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:05 pm:

    Blago got recorded by the Feds
    Going to Wymas house in the eve’

    You may say there are no such things as bugs
    But as for me and blago we belive…

  93. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:10 pm:

    Will one of you lyricmeisters please rewrite the lyrics to “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer”?

    Blago got arrested by a G-Man
    Jogging thru Ravenswood on Christmas Eve.
    You can say there’s no such thing as Fitzmas,
    But as for me an’ Cap Fax, we believe.

  94. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:14 pm:

    Speaking at Will-

    Unless “How Ironic” and VM are one and the same, you need to give credit where it’s due. You ought to sing one of VM’s on the air too, as long as it isn’t the LSD remake…I’m still gagging like Simon Cowell from that one.

  95. - 312 - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:17 pm:

    A separate section for the holiday carols IS MANDATORY!!! And could those of non-Christian faiths please offer their input? I’m working up something along the lines of “Hava Nagila”

    Seems like a few of the commenters have been hitting the holiday parties already today…

    Tis the season!

  96. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:18 pm:

    Speaking At Will-

    VM didn’t pen the snowman song. I did. He did the “Chestnuts Song”.

    And we are NOT one in the same. Rich I’m sure can verify that. Run our IP’s past Fitzmas.

  97. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:25 pm:

    Speaking at Will

    Whats the station? Do you stream? I’d like to hear that on air. If that is kosher w/Rich to post.

  98. - Vote Quimby! - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:29 pm:

    ==90 minutes of Wyma and Blagojevich talking about Elvis==
    Wow. I can’t picture a setting much worse than this one. Imagine if you were his cellmate for 6.5 years…

  99. - How Ironic - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:36 pm:

    I think this will be my last for the day. Unless I can think of more rhymes. After all, there are only so many things that go with Blago.

    Hark the Blago Lackeys Sing

    Hark! The Blago Lackeys Sing,
    Have to grab the golden ring,
    Time is short and Fitzs’ mercy mild,
    Facts and evidence reconciled,

    Hark! The Blago Lackeys Sing
    Have to grab the golden ring.

    Fitzy, hear the citizens cries,
    See the pile of subpoenas rise,
    While the Tribune reporters proclaim,
    Blago thinks he is born in Bethlehem.

    Hail the Heaven-sent Prince of Fitz,
    Hail the Sun of investigation,
    The Gov is in throws of castigation,
    Sunk with schemes and manipulation!

  100. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:51 pm:

    Gov’s bill for Philly trip - $19,347.30

    State of Illinois cost for ruined state computer screens from coffee, soda spit on 12/5/08 - $19,347.30

    The joy of Fitzmas - Priceless!

  101. - 10th Indy - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 2:57 pm:

    Just for you 312 -

    We had a little Blago
    Made out of pay-to-play
    The well is dry, we’re ready
    To send him on his way

    Blago, Blago, Blago, his feet are made of clay
    And now that Fitz is ready
    With Blago he will play.

  102. - He Makes Ryan Look Like a Saint - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:05 pm:



  103. - Anon2 - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:08 pm:

    Wyma, a Squealer? (with apologies to “Havah Nagila”)

    Wyma, a squealer?
    Wyma, a squealer?
    Wyma, a squealer?
    G-Rod’s in trouble.

    Fitzpatrick’s running strong,
    Doesn’t look like it’ll be too long.
    Blago, indicted soon?
    Patty, when’s visiting day?

    “The Blago Song” (sung to the tune of the “Dreidel Song”)
    Blago, Blago, Blago, got greedier by the day,
    Blago, Blago, Blago, Fitz’ going to make you pay.

  104. - Speaking at Will - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:17 pm:

    I dont want to use Cap Fax as a promo tool for my afternoon show. You have to pay for advertising, However if anyone is interested they can e mail me

    hopefully rich does not mind me posting this.

  105. - Speaking at Will - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:19 pm:

    A Thousand pardons for saying that Van Man wrote the Blago the Snowman song. I will give you proper credit.

  106. - Leave a light on George - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:24 pm:

    Go to ispeeved web site and listen to the Gov’s press release. Have sound turned down if you’re at work!

  107. - Little Egypt - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:26 pm:

    Rich, in your wildest dreams you couldn’t have imagined this kind of response to this subject. I guess you could make a QOTD to come up with a Christmas song for Blago, but this has been a day definitely NOT to miss reading this blog. Thanks for a great ending to the week.

  108. - Speaking at Will - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:30 pm:

    I second Little egypts remarks!

  109. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:43 pm:

    O Little Town of Springfield

    O little town of Springfield
    How still we hear your lies
    Above your search for living cheap
    Our taxmoney goes flying by
    And under thy dark dome createth
    An everlasting blight
    The nightmares and fears we’ve had for years
    You’ve made come true tonight

    For Blago was married into Mell’s family
    They gathered all around
    While voters sleep, legislators keep
    A watch over lobbyist’s funds
    Media stars together
    Proclaimed Obama’s birth
    And praises sing to The One as King
    From CNN to all on Earth

    How silently, how silently
    Our wages and hope are stolen!
    And Emil departs from his trough
    With enough loot to reach to Heaven.
    No wire may hear his dealmaking,
    But in his den of sin,
    When Wyman’s will deceived him still,
    As the dear Feds entered in.

    O as an Illinois voter
    Come to us, we pray
    Cast out this sin and enter in
    Reform our state today
    We hear the Tribune’s reporters
    The great glad tidings tell
    O come to us, abide with us
    And save us from this hell!

  110. - The Mad Hatter - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:47 pm:

    Sorry I can’t comment on this story Rich. It’s just too easy. I’ve said since Day One that (Unindicted Official) A-Rod is a crook. Now I’m left to sit smugly on the sidelines saying “I told you so.” It’s just too easy.

  111. - Jake from Elwood - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:47 pm:

    Is it Wyma, as it rhymes with “Subpeona” or is it Wyma, as it rhymes with “Angina”?

  112. - Six Degrees of Separation - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:50 pm:


    I’ll give you an attaboy for that one. Not sure if it cancels out your last “masterpiece”…but let’s all give VM a hand for starting out this stream of collective Cap Fax consciousness at 10:15 am.

  113. - Anonymous - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 3:55 pm:

    - The Right to Counsel -

    “Will Winston & Strawn represent Rod personally?”

    The funny thing about this is that Cellini retained Mr. Webb from W&S. If Cellini is connected with the trial of Rod (even if he is put on the witness list and not called), W&S cannot represent Rod in the case. The firm would have a conflict of interest between two clients in the same criminal transaction.

    I noticed that as soon as Cellini signed up Webb. That $2-$3 million Rod payed to W&S was all wasted. They cannot even turn over the work product to Blago’s new attorney’s, whomever that may be.

    I bet he has to go out of state to get his rep. All of the really good federal criminal lawyers in Chicago are already wrapped up in this case in some way, shape or form. HAHAHAHA!

  114. - South Side Mike - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 4:00 pm:


    Some of your middle entries were good, not great, but O Little Town of Springfield may have taken the cake.

    Rich, I think this page is enough to again prove your blog’s superiority over any other in IL. Heck, you may even have your next few Sun-Times columns written for you!

  115. - Anonymous - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 4:11 pm:

    W&S will not represent Rod in the criminal case. They are no longer his lawyers…

  116. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 4:35 pm:

    If Wyma has been wired up since 2005-that is almost 4 years of tapes from the most sensitive meetings the Governor and his cronies have had. That really is something to write songs about.

  117. - VanillaMan - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 4:50 pm:

    I had a lot of fun getting crazy and “O Little Town” is what happened when I got serious.

    We really have a mess to clean up. We have even refused to call a Constitutional Convention when we could. When one considers how awful our state’s situation is today, we have to wonder if a Constitutional Convention could ever be called, if not this year. That, in itself, it reason to rewrite our current constitution, in that the poison pill/escape hatch designed within it in 1969 has a lock on it that is too complicated for us to use, even when all hell is breaking loose around us.

    Our constitution has allowed too much power to be in too few hands. It is too easy for our state to become locked up due to partisanship and personal squabbles. We’ve been living with this situation since 2005 and after three years we still cannot bust through this firewall of inaction.

    We’ve lost Obama, Halvorson, and others who should have remained and remade this state. Their political successes are our loss on a state level. Yet, we have not provided our ambitious problem solvers avenues to pursue, so they are leaving. In 2008, we have seen a remarkable brain drain in Illinois of leaders tired of living in limbo.

    There are no easy solution for Illinois. We couldn’t benefit from the economic boom over the past five years and now as we enter a period of economic contraction our situation has worsened.

  118. - A Citizen - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 4:52 pm:

    guv may well be drafting legislation, as we blog, to make it unlawful to incarcerate two Illinois guvs at the same time. Of course he’ll have to rescind his recommendation on Ole George getting out early.

  119. - Disgusted - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:02 pm:

    Absolutely the best blog stream today. Laughed out loud - a lot!

  120. - Disgusted - Friday, Dec 5, 08 @ 10:03 pm:

    By the way, if our favorite Irishman is monitoring this blog, I hope he enjoyed it as much as the rest of us did.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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