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Guv won’t dump on Rezko, but attacks reporters

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2008

* In the preceding post, I mentioned how legit reformers are way too often unfairly treated by reporters. Gov. Blagojevich, however, is not a reformer. He’s a claimed reformer who has mucked things up almost beyond repair. But, since he still desperately clings to that reporter mantle, he apparently feels that he can blame the media for his troubles

Gov. Blagojevich on Tuesday again blasted the news media for focusing too heavily on the Tony Rezko case and said he’s still withholding judgment about his former adviser and fund-raiser, who was jailed this week for violating bail.

“You could suggest maybe why those newspapers are getting skinnier and skinnier [is] because they write about stuff that doesn’t really matter to people,” Blagojevich said toward the end of a press conference about veterans’ health.

When asked if he regretted his relationship with Rezko, Blagojevich replied, “There’s a process that we call the court system that has to play itself out.

OK, on the same day that Rezko is denied bail that’s all the governor can muster?

Blagojevich’s campaign fund has racked up more than $2 million in legal fees, mostly because of Blagojevich’s relationship with Rezko and his alleged co-conspirators. But regrets? Not even a few.

* And I love this line…

Political candidates, the governor added, “presume and hope that people who are helping us are doing things honestly and forthrightly, and sometimes there are allegations

Tony Rezko was a member of the governor’s inner political circle. This was no run of the mill contributor that the governor barely knew who screwed up. Rezko was one of the governor’s top guys. He has no excuse, and it’s completely fair of the media to look into those ties and be skeptical of the govenor’s pronouncements, which get goofier by the day. The same goes for Obama, a Rezko friend.

* More Rezko stuff…

* Obama cuts Rezko ties

* Judge rules Rezko will stay behind bars

* From his mansion to the big house

* Rezko stain tars gov and Obama

- Posted by Rich Miller        

104 Comments
  1. - IncrediblyDumberThanYouThink - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 9:40 am:

    Think how cheated Blaggodiot must feel. Now he must share his top thief/crony with Obama.
    The headlines all say Obama donor….

    GRod must really be lonely


  2. - The 'Broken Heart' of Rogers Park - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 9:48 am:

    Done right, in a head-to-head debate, (no Edwards) Billary could deliver a knock-out blow to Obama by continuing with Rezko. The timing couldn’t have been more ripe for the pickings.


  3. - Dan S, a Voter - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 9:58 am:

    The lack of a statement by Blago and Obama coming clean on their Rezco dealings screams of guilt. But as our “brilliant” Governor is quoted above, “There’s a process that we call the court system that has to play itself out.


  4. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:02 am:

    I have to agree with the Gov on this one. The media has no business investigating or reporting on real political corruption.


  5. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:04 am:

    The NBC news story did a masterful job of
    explaining the main problem with Rezkobama….

    it’s the HOUSE, stupid.

    Obama should be donating his PERSONAL money
    to some charity.

    Rezko buys lot at full price, a lot he does not
    use. Lots of bucks….

    Obama pays $300K under list price for his house
    on the same day Rezko buys the lot.

    REAgent says the two parcels were to be sold at
    the same time.

    Obama benefits PERSONALLY to the tune of, oh,
    hundreds of thousands of dollars. Why?
    Without Rezko Obama and his wife and kids would
    not be living in that mansion. Unless they
    ponied up the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    why doesn’t Rezko sell the lot? can it be
    developed? he’s keeping it nice for Obama,
    that large lot next door with all that grass.

    It’s the HOUSE stupid!!!!! The Rezkobama house.


  6. - Kiyoshi Martinez - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:04 am:

    “You could suggest maybe why those newspapers are getting skinnier and skinnier [is] because they write about stuff that doesn’t really matter to people,” Blagojevich said toward the end of a press conference about veterans’ health.

    Ouch, that’s a low blow to the Sun-Times.


  7. - North of I-80 - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:05 am:

    After each bad day for Rezko, more news coverage on Obama-Rezko connection, Obama coughs up more $$$. THAT doesn’t pass the smell test and is disappointing. Next bad-Rezko day, does he give back a portion of the vacant lot next to his house?


  8. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:06 am:

    Blaming the media is the next-to-last refuge of a scoundrel. I suspect Blago will soon be wrapping himself in the flag.


  9. - DeepFriedOnAStick - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:07 am:

    Rich, in the top of your post, don’t you mean “reformer mantle,” not “reporter mantle”?


  10. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:14 am:

    If Blago is indeed attempting to don a “reporter mantle,” the media is in bigger trouble than I thought :-)


  11. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:18 am:

    He can blame who he wants, deny what he wants, but at the end of the day, only HE is PUBLIC OFFICIAL A


  12. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:18 am:

    I think Rich meant “Cub Reporter”.


  13. - undecided - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:27 am:

    How close are Obama and Blago? How close are Blago and Emil? Will Obama, if elected reappoint Patrick Fitzgerald? Will he pardon Blago if convicted? I would like to believe him, however the last guy who promised change/end business as usual has been a big disappointment.


  14. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:31 am:

    Undecided raises a good point. If any Illinois reporter gets a crack at Obama before Tuesday, I hope they ask the Pat Fitzgerald question.


  15. - North of I-80 - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:32 am:

    I bet that as Rezko trial gets going and focus starts to swirl closer to the Governor, we will see and hear some crazier things yet. Of course it’ll be the fault of reporters that his wheels wobble completely off.


  16. - Ghost - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:35 am:

    Amy your facts are wrong.

    To begin with its rare that a house sells for list price. Also, as Obama explained, he got a discount, as do many others in housing developments, for the early buy in. If you paid list price for your house I suggest practicing the art of negotiation. If the failure to pay list price means everyone needs to contribute the difference to chairty, then charities are looking at a banner year.

    Now HRC sold homes to retirees with a clause that if they were one day late on a payment, all the money down and payments to date were converedt to liqudated damages. This allowed the ownbers in Whitewater to auqire retirees donwpayments, then boot them out if they mistimed a payment and keep all the cash paid to date. No equity in the property. if anyone needs to contribute to a charity I would say somone preying upon those with fixed incomes should lead the way.


  17. - Bill - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:44 am:

    Hill is in no position to be criticizing anybody about real estate. Ask that good ol boy from Ark., Jim “Guy” Tucker what its like to get get involved with Hilly. Does anyone remember Hilly’s cattle deal where she made $$$$$$ overnight from her “investment”?
    What about Hsu?
    HillBill should stick to the issues. They have a very checkered past,ethically. Not that I object to that but a lot of voters might.


  18. - Vole - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:50 am:

    The aerial pictures of the Obama mansion I saw on NBC tell me much more about the story than print alone ever did. The house and the lot were developed as one integral unit with united wall and landscaping. There is a smaller fence separating the “vacant” lot from the house lot. I can see why the seller would have wanted to sell the properties together since the undeveloped “lot” definitely added more value to the house. In this view, the way I see it, is that Rezko is a co-owner of the Obama mansion property. I would have never purchased a place like that if I thought that someone would develop the lot next door. Also, by purchasing 10 feet of “Rezko’s” lot, Obama reduced the potential value of that lot being sold and developed.

    Why did Obama need such a mansion? For fund raising parties? To secure his stature among perceived elite peers to launch future political bids? If so, it was counterproductive.

    But, saying all that, I am still voting for Obama in the primary. Bill and Hillary had many similar “friends” in Arkansas who ended up doing time. And there is still the cattle trading scandal hanging out there. Plus, NO MORE DYNASTIES and no more Bill in the White House!


  19. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:55 am:

    -Bill-
    “…They have a very checkered past,ethically. Not that I object to that but a lot of voters might. …”
    Bill, some of your writing is priceless Illinois Political thought. You should copyright things like the above! Not that I disagree . . .!


  20. - He Makes Ryan look like a Saint - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:58 am:

    Bill, Good point, WHY doesn’t anyone bring up the old Whitewater issues, or all the other fine things that happened in Arkansas?


  21. - Little Egypt - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:00 am:

    I second Bill’s comment.


  22. - the Other Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:00 am:

    Blagojevich’s refusal to criticize Rezko is interesting, considering how willing he is to throw other people under the bus.


  23. - Little Egypt - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:04 am:

    Blago better get used to smelling bus fumes. He will end up getting run over by his own bus, and I’d like to be on it when that happens. Politicians should make a mental note of all of this Blago stuff. Don’t rent any buses.


  24. - Loyal Alumn-Uof I 65 - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:14 am:

    According to the real estate agent involved in the sale, they ahd to be sold together. This implies a contract offer and signing wherein both parties knew each other and discussed the terms of the sale. That being the case, why did Ms. Retzko pay full price for her lot and Obama the lesser amount
    and then turn around a buy a piece of the Retko lot. Why not just get financing that would cover the house and lot? Many are asking what was the source of the downpayment for the Obama’s? Would it not be easier to tell the story upfront and get rid of the nagging impression that something is not right about this transaction? Why continue the problem when it can be addressed?


  25. - Leave a light on George - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:37 am:

    Antoin, please exdcept my legal* advice. I’m offering it at no charge. (If your own lawyers don’t tell you the same thing you should fire them.)

    You are in a race. Your opponent is Chris Kelly. The first to tell the federalies the information they are seeking wins the race. The prize is a get out of jail free card. Loose and you are destined to spend the next decade in the care of the federal prison system. Tell what you know even if it includes shady real estate dealings with Patti B.

    * I’m not a lawyer but I did stay at a Holiday Inn last night.


  26. - grand old partisan - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:42 am:

    Blago taking yet ANOTHER page out of the Daley playbook. When in trouble - attack the media!


  27. - Vole - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 11:56 am:

    Loyal: “Would it not be easier to tell the story upfront and get rid of the nagging impression that something is not right about this transaction? Why continue the problem when it can be addressed?”

    You repeat the question that Rich and many others have been asking since this story surfaced.

    It seems to follow the adage in politics that the biggest problem is not with the original commission but with the cover up. Stonewalling just fuels the suspicion that there is something more there.

    An analogy that comes to my mind is the swiftboating of John Kerry in the 2004 campaign. Although I voted for Kerry, there remained some questions about his war record that Kerry never completely cleared up and left impressions that even at the time of his service he had manipulated it for future political gain. Perhaps the issue would never have surfaced had Kerry not held it up as a target at the convention. Obama may have put himself into a similar position with the purchase of the mansion. If intended to boost his standing for election, it could have been self defeating.


  28. - RMW Stanford - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 12:35 pm:

    “HillBill should stick to the issues. They have a very checkered past,ethically. Not that I object to that but a lot of voters might”

    True, but pretty much every one already knows that so bring up the ethics issues is not going to harm the Clintons much. On the other hand it has the ability to take some of the luster off of Obama star and when he already running for a place of weakness against the Clintons, that could be bad.


  29. - David Ormsby - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 12:44 pm:

    The Sun-Times allusion was kinda funny, uncalled for, but funny.


  30. - Can't do it - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 12:45 pm:

    Vole & Loyal- The problem with being upfront and telling the story is that it a very ugly story. In the best version possible it really hurts the campaign.


  31. - Huh? - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 12:57 pm:

    Bill -

    For once I agree with you. (I must be ill or something and not thinking straight…..)

    Every time that woman brings up rezko, Obama ought to say 1 word: Hsu


  32. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:15 pm:

    P.S. - Does anyone know what the relationship is like between Fitzy and John McCain? Maybe Fitz really tries to help (or is trying to help) because he knows he could get the AG spot or something else? Just thinking out loud here . . . I have no proof other than the existence of a possibility.


  33. - Bookworm - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:22 pm:

    Bud Man, I have read on at least two GOP blogs that McCain is on record as saying he would keep Fitzgerald on as U.S. Attorney, while Romney has hinted that he would get rid of him (because of his handling of the Plame case).


  34. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:28 pm:

    ghost, did you listen to the real estate agent?
    it was considered as a transaction where the parcels were sold together, one side at market rate (why?) and the other below market rate(why?).

    Rezko is a co - owner, or perhaps
    we could say Obama and
    Rezko own the property together.

    with real estate problems on the rise for the
    average person, how nice to know that a legal
    job can lead to an indicted person helping
    one live in a mansion. at least this is true
    in Rezkobama land.

    Whitewater has been soooo analyzed. Rezko? the Trial is happening NOW.


  35. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:42 pm:

    ===ghost, did you listen to the real estate agent?
    it was considered as a transaction where the parcels were sold together, one side at market rate (why?) and the other below market rate(why?).

    As has been pointed out for over a year now, the two properties were bid on separately and there was a bid about $25,000 less for the vacant lot than Rezko paid. Obama had the high bid for hte house which had been on the market for some time.

    BTW, you don’t appear to understand the concept of market rate. The market rate is what something sells at not what is asked.

    ===Rezko is a co - owner, or perhaps
    we could say Obama and Rezko own the property together.

    Wrong again and check out the record of deeds to see how wrong. They are two separate properties sold as two separate properties. In past sales they were bundled in one sale, but were kept as separate properties on the books.


  36. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:46 pm:

    ====#According to the real estate agent involved in the sale, they ahd to be sold together. This implies a contract offer and signing wherein both parties knew each other and discussed the terms of the sale.

    I’m always amazed by what people claim is implied. The owners wanted to close on the properties at the same time so they knew they wouldn’t be stuck with a property after unloading the other one. This has been explained for over a year.

    ===That being the case, why did Ms. Retzko pay full price for her lot and Obama the lesser amount
    and then turn around a buy a piece of the Retko lot.

    There was a bid only $25,000 under what Rezko paid. Obama had the highest bid.

    === Why not just get financing that would cover the house and lot?

    They did get a mortgage–this was in the Tribune piece and so the point would be that they did not want to extend themselves to a mortgage of another $650,000.

    -=== Many are asking what was the source of the downpayment for the Obama’s?

    The book deal.


  37. - downhereforyears - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:47 pm:

    Looks like Blago has a new enemy to blame for all that is wrong…..it’s the media. He didn’t learn his lesson with Madigan, and now he’s taking on people who buy ink by the barrel. He really has either the most incompetent advisors or he’s suicidal. Either way, what scares me is the fact that he is still in charge.


  38. - Bill - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 1:57 pm:

    The governor has very competent advisors and media people.


  39. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:00 pm:

    Archpundit, as long as you’re answering questions:

    Why did Ms. Rezko buy the property?

    Who approached whom about buying the two properties on the same day?

    Was there to be any consideration for Mr. or Ms. Rezko for purchasing the lot?


  40. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:02 pm:

    the famous words that haunt Obama regarding the
    Rezko real estate transaction….

    Personal Residence.

    he used a person of supremely questionable
    integrity to make it easy for himself to
    live in a big house. his personal residence, the
    place where he lives with his wife and
    children, he thought that was so important
    that he did something “boneheaded.”

    sorry, it’s not that simple when your
    personal residence is a mansion with
    a side of Rezko.


  41. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:02 pm:

    Bill states through omission that Blago is suicidal! LOL


  42. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:08 pm:

    Rich, why did my post of 1:14 get taken down? Was I spreading a rumor or a gratuitous insult?


  43. - Kevin Fanning - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:10 pm:

    Sorry Bud Man, computer glitch.


  44. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:16 pm:

    That’s ok Kevin. Great work by the way!! Good to have you around.

    The point of my post was that if Dems were smart they would dump Barack and go for Hill. The Rezko story is not going away for at least six months and will continue to heat up as more comes out about Obama’s involvement. This should be a leeson for anyone in Chicago politics: don’t try to rise too high or the combine will come back to take a bite out of your rear.


  45. - Bookworm - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:22 pm:

    Perhaps we are not seeing the forest for the trees when it comes to Rezko. Remember, he has given money to politicians all over the country — not just Obama and Blago, not just Democrats, and not just in Chicago or Illinois. And he has unimaginably wealthy and well-placed friends overseas. Seems to me there’s a much bigger picture here.


  46. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:28 pm:

    “Obama told the Chicago Sun-Times his “best estimate” was that Rezko had raised more than $60,000 for him during his political career.”

    Doesn’t this really mean that this is the best estimate he can make considering what he stands for to his faith-based supporters?

    “The governor has very competent advisors and media people.”

    I guess Bill is reminding us that you can only lie so much but still can’t get Blagojevich to look ethical.


  47. - Macbeth - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:45 pm:

    >> The governor has very competent advisors and media people.

    Okay, no. This is absolutely, positively *incorrect*. I’ve worked with the governor’s office for many years (not on the media side) — and I will say: the people working in the GO’s are nuts. They have very little experience, hate to take responsibility, and do not have a clue about the inner workings of state agencies.

    Bill, you are absolutely wrong here. This administration is a nightmare. And I’m not even talking about the possible corruption stuff. That’s small-ball, frankly, to the larger issue of simply running the state.

    Either you’re joking (I assume you’re joking and I just missed the smiley) or you’re misinformed.

    I know *no one* who has worked with the gov’s office who would ever say that the advisors and inner sanctum folks are competent. They will say a lot of other things — but not competent. Ever.


  48. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:47 pm:

    ===Why did Ms. Rezko buy the property?

    Probably to get an in with Obama, but also to potentially develop it. No one disputes that Rezko was trying to get his claws into Obama as well.

    ==Who approached whom about buying the two properties on the same day?

    Selling the two properties on the same day was a condition of the sellers so when bids were made the seller’s real estate agent would have made that clear.

    ===Was there to be any consideration for Mr. or Ms. Rezko for purchasing the lot?

    They got a lot. That may seem flip, but why would there be a consideration if the purpose was Rezko trying to do a favor?

    If you watch the WTTW interview with Chase and Novak who have covered the story–and very well–the questions to them don’t so much center on the land, but on the past relationship with Rezko. Having investigated the sale they seem to think it was dumb to buy the strip–and it was really dumb, but the real questions to them are what fundraising did Rezko help out with and they want more details on that fundraising. The questions they seem to be saying are left to be answered are more on the relationship between Obama and Rezko and not on this specific aspect of the house and strip of land.


  49. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:51 pm:

    ===he used a person of supremely questionable
    integrity to make it easy for himself to
    live in a big house. his personal residence, the
    place where he lives with his wife and
    children, he thought that was so important
    that he did something “boneheaded.”

    Except Rezko didn’t make it easier to buy the house. You can keep making the claim, but it doesn’t hold up.

    The lots were listed separately. They are separately listed in the recorder of deeds database and always have been. They simply had been sold as two lots in previous deals.

    The two lots were bid on separately and in the case of the vacant lot, it was sold for $25,000 more than the second highest bid.

    Obama offered the highest bid on the house and a bid that matched what the original owners paid for it after it had been on the market for months.

    Now if you want to claim the strip of land was a favor, you could argue that, but ultimately Obama paid above assessed valuation.


  50. - Macbeth - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:53 pm:

    BTW — I’m always amazed at how the media has given the gov a free pass for non-corruption related stuff. The corruption stories are sexy, but the more serious issue in Illinois government is the *rampant* mismanagement of state agencies — the wasted spending and wasted resources (first and foremost) — but also the politicization of agencies. The state is broke — but the agencies — especially the smaller agencies — suffer.

    It’s not corruption. It’s *worse* than corruptions. Good initiatives are getting nixed by the gov’s office out of sheer incompetence or blatant politics.

    I’m astonished no one — no one — has taken a close look at the state of the state from inside.


  51. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:53 pm:

    Archpundit, in my opinion, United States Senators should not take, or be allowed to take, $600,000 plus “favors” from people trying to “get their claws” in them.


  52. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:57 pm:

    ===Archpundit, in my opinion, United States Senators should not take, or be allowed to take, $600,000 plus “favors” from people trying to “get their claws” in them.

    It wasn’t a $600,000 plus favor. It was the favor of selling a ten foot strip to Obama at above the assessed valuation. That’s not a monetary gain, but it is convenience of being able to expand the lot.


  53. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 2:57 pm:

    Bill said: “The governor has very competent advisors and media people”

    Really?! I can’t wait to meet them. When do they start?


  54. - Leave a light on George - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:01 pm:

    Macbeth - You speak the 100% truth when it come to the operation of state government by this administration. Blago was not prepared to govern from day one and still is not.


  55. - ink by the barrell - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:08 pm:

    Grand Old Partisan, I remember George Ryan also using the media attack strategy. It worked well for him, it worked well for Bill Clinton in S.C. and now it’s working for Rod…. next thing you know he’ll be blaming our pal Rich…


  56. - Macbeth - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:09 pm:

    Hey, I no longer have a state job. I’m happy to talk about all the crazy, bizarre, immoral stuff that went on in my agency — all under the watch of a truly, truly incompetent director.

    And I tend to be an optimist about most things. But the shift — and decay — of my particular agency under Blagojevich was astonishing.


  57. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:28 pm:

    archpundit, your arguments would hold up if
    the properties in question were not handled
    on the same day.

    but they were. Obama and Rezko were in this together for Obama’s benefit. that’s why
    it is not as simple as two transactions.

    and it’s not as simple as a strip of land.
    that try at an excuse is simply silly.

    of course, Obama may want to blame the transactions on their wives.

    cause Michelle Obama might be
    approaching the Mrs. Rezko/Mrs. Blagojevich
    aisle.


  58. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:36 pm:

    ==archpundit, your arguments would hold up if
    the properties in question were not handled
    on the same day.

    It’s a bit hard to discuss this if you just insist it’s all wrong. The point that the owners wanted to sell both properties on the same day to avoid being stuck with one or the other is pretty much accepted by those who did the investigative reporting. Why do you know better than them.

    ===but they were. Obama and Rezko were in this together for Obama’s benefit. that’s why
    it is not as simple as two transactions.

    That’s a conclusion that you don’t seem able to support. How did Obama benefit if he was the high bidder on his lot and the Rezkos were only $25,000 over the second highest bidder.

    If there was a substantial difference between the highest and second highest bid, we’d have something to work with. However, there wasn’t much of a difference so whether it was Rezko who bought it on the same day or whomever the 2nd highest bidder was doesn’t seem to be of much consequence.


  59. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:38 pm:

    Arch Pundit -

    –The lots were listed separately. They are separately listed in the recorder of deeds database and always have been. They simply had been sold as two lots in previous deals. –

    Didn’t early media reports state that the original owner seperated the two tracts of land and list them seprately?

    When I read this story when it first broke, it seemed as if there COULD have been collusion b/twn the U of C doctor, the Obama’s (Michelle worked at U of C), and the Rezko’s b/c the land was not always listed seperately. That allegation has never been made, but the owner’s real estate agent and the original owner themseleves have still not commented on the story to refute that claim as well. If you have proof from the ROD website, could you provide a link for me? thx

    – It wasn’t a $600,000 plus favor. It was the favor of selling a ten foot strip to Obama at above the assessed valuation. That’s not a monetary gain, but it is convenience of being able to expand the lot. –

    That simplfies things a bit, doesn’t it? If the owner’s would not have made the -$300,000 deal with Obama w/o Rezko paying full price for the land, it is a substantial and lucrative favor. Maybe Obama wanted to ensure that he knew the owner of the adjoining property?

    Either way, this is not a simple mistake b/c that explanation would have been given and accepted by the media. No, something stinks here and Obama’s lack of an honest and thorough answer indicates as much.


  60. - chiatty - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:40 pm:

    The Clintons have dozens of scumbags who have attached themselves like villainous barnacles over the years. Obama, it would appear, has one. And it just so happens that the same scumbag gave money to Bill Clinton.

    And this is big news? And this is worth John Kass’ continued attempts at lyric-writing?


  61. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:47 pm:

    ==== but the owner’s real estate agent and the original owner themseleves have still not commented on the story to refute that claim as well.

    The seller’s real estate agent was on NBC the other day.

    But more to the point, this is how silly stories continue. That there could have been collusion is true of almost anything. The question is whether there is actual evidence for such a thing. You cannot prove a negative so the question is whether or not there is evidence of collusion and given what the Trib and Sun-Times have done, there isn’t any evidence of collusion.


  62. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:52 pm:

    ===#It wasn’t a $600,000 plus favor. It was the favor of selling a ten foot strip to Obama at above the assessed valuation. That’s not a monetary gain, but it is convenience of being able to expand the lot. –

    That simplfies things a bit, doesn’t it? If the owner’s would not have made the -$300,000 deal with Obama w/o Rezko paying full price for the land, it is a substantial and lucrative favor.

    This is like moving goal posts. Yes, something could have happened, but according to the people who actually investigated it, it doesn’t appear to be collusion. Someone’s nose twitching doesn’t contradict that.

    ===Maybe Obama wanted to ensure that he knew the owner of the adjoining property?

    ===Either way, this is not a simple mistake b/c that explanation would have been given and accepted by the media. No, something stinks here and Obama’s lack of an honest and thorough answer indicates as much.

    What hasn’t he answered in relation to the house deal and what isn’t confirmed in the Trib and Sun-Times?

    One can argue reasonably he’s been too cute by half talking about the past history of fundraising and different fundraisers, but in terms of the land deal he seems to have fully answered questions. It just seems people want there to be something there even if the Trib and Sun-Times cannot find anything about the actual land deals that is problematic other than it being boneheaded.


  63. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 3:55 pm:

    chiatty -

    I don’t think Hill ever got money from Rezko. Not sure and don’t have the time to look it up now, but I think that photo was connected to the DNC convention in Chicago. You can tell b/c they look sooo young. Rezko did host a $3.5 million fundraiser for Bush in 2003 though.

    Arch –

    I thought that was Rezko’s real estate agent? From what I saw (and it was short) the story didn’t make that very clear.

    What about my first point? I am curious about that but hae not been able to get a definitive answer. Thanks for the thoughtful and civil discourse.


  64. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:02 pm:

    ==I thought that was Rezko’s real estate agent? From what I saw (and it was short) the story didn’t make that very clear.

    No, it was the seller’s real estate agent. MSNBC has the clip up.

    I’m not sure what the question is on the first point–could there have been collusion. Sure. We cannot prove a negative, but there are no clear connections. Does that make sense?


  65. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:06 pm:

    Arch-
    Sorry, late post before. I somewhat agree with your analysis, and I hope that your explanations ring true. I am tired of Chicago and Illinois politics and I hope Obama repesents a new generation of Chicago style free politics. But you can’t blame anyone brought up under this system for being cynical and I just have this feeling that Obama is going to turn into the most phony pol of them all.

    The reason this story sticks around is because it resonates with real people, especially in Illinois. Normal people don’t have magical deals like this that enable them to buy the house of their dreams. And Illinoisans fully appreciates this story because it shows, at the very least, that Obama was willing to get into bed with someone like Rezko, even after he knew he was under dirty and under federal investigation. As for the rest of the country, at the very least, it demonstrates and incredibly poor sense of judgement from someone who wants to be the next leader of the free world.


  66. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:10 pm:

    My first point was on the listing of the properties. As far as I have heard, the lots were seperated by the original owner prior to listing them. Have you seen the deeds through the database, and if so, could you provide a link for me?

    I know you can’t make assumptions of collusion, but the more coincidences and conveniences that pile up on the deal, the more it is suspect. That is how the press, the police, and prosecutors all operate.


  67. - Dirty Bath Water - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:11 pm:

    Hey Macbeth,

    From which agency did you formerly work? If you dare say.

    I was with the state also and our director, a person I knew in High School, sold me out. A total scumbag.


  68. - Loyal Alumn-Uof I 65 - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:12 pm:

    Arch- The property can no longer sustained being developed as it won’t meet building code. So for the price of a 10 ft. strip, Obama in effect got a whole lot that will never be anything but a garden.
    The two pieces have to held in separate tax ID numbers as that is the way property is assessed in Cook County. Otherwise,the taxes would be astronomical on a piece of developed and improved residence. Real Estate agents are not held to the same confidence standard as are lawyers-so it can de discussed if warranted.


  69. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:12 pm:

    I understand your point and yes, it’s a problem of judgment to have gotten the strip from him and to ask him about the neighborhood given we knew enough was wrong with the guy at that point.

    That said, I think Rich’s point about Suffredin kind of speaks to this. No one is perfect and it’s fair to call them on it when the run as a reformer. However, picking them apart helps people like Rod who really are phonies.

    So I guess my point is, be skeptical, but also follow the evidence and ask questions, but don’t make assumptions that everything is the worst. Blagojevich has the worst pretty much cornered anyway.


  70. - Vole - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:21 pm:

    ARCH: Please respond to my earlier reading of the Obama house deal:

    The aerial pictures of the Obama mansion I saw on NBC tell me much more about the story than print alone ever did. The house and the lot were developed as one integral unit with united wall and landscaping. There is a smaller fence separating the “vacant” lot from the house lot. I can see why the seller would have wanted to sell the properties together on the same day (although listed separately) since the undeveloped “lot” definitely added more value to the house. In this view, the way I see it, is that Rezko is a co-owner of the Obama mansion property. I would have never purchased a place like that if I thought that someone would develop the lot next door. Also, by purchasing 10 feet of “Rezko’s” lot, Obama reduced the potential value of that lot being sold and developed.


  71. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:22 pm:

    Obviously Obama is planning ahead in tieing up that vacant lot. When he is POTUS that’s where his secret service guys will live. Now that is optimism, on his part.


  72. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:22 pm:

    ===Arch- The property can no longer sustained being developed as it won’t meet building code. So for the price of a 10 ft. strip, Obama in effect got a whole lot that will never be anything but a garden.

    But how did you make this claim. The guy who currently owns it says it can be–obviously he has a self-interest in selling it. I admit to not knowing the areas zoning requirements, but I haven’t seen anything that demonstrates that lot is not buildable now.


  73. - Bill - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:30 pm:

    A,
    Are you sure that you are not actually, “Official A”


  74. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:32 pm:

    Loyal makes a good point. Michelle Obama had to exert influence over a city board to get a permit to build the fence! Add to that any retsrictions on the historical aspect of the neighborhood and the complex zoning requirements in the city, and that small tract of land does not seem as if it could have ever been developed in a fashion that would reflect the neighborhood and the surronding structures. Rezko cold afford (or so he thought) to sit on an undeveloped piece of land and wait for the feds or the state to buy up the home as a historical monument when his golden boy became president (I admit, I’m reaching).

    -The guy who currently owns it says it can be–obviously he has a self-interest in selling it.-

    The guy who owns it happens to be a previous attorney of Rezko’s and the sale appeared to be tied to previous debts, according to reports.


  75. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:36 pm:

    -Bill-
    I used to be “Citizen A” until I ticked off Rich or Paul and got spiked a couple years ago. I brought up Jack Bauer (24) apparently at an inappropriate time. I had chosen Citizen A because I know many of those folks with similar monikers. Not Official A, however, much to my betterment!


  76. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:36 pm:

    —Have you seen the deeds through the database, and if so, could you provide a link for me?

    Let me see if I can pull it up again–it’s nuisance because he listed it to get privacy.


  77. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:41 pm:

    ===Loyal makes a good point. Michelle Obama had to exert influence over a city board to get a permit to build the fence!

    Where does this claim come from?


  78. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:42 pm:

    Thanks Arch. I’m actually doing research for a class on this, and it could help.


  79. - archpundit - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 4:46 pm:

    ===The guy who owns it happens to be a previous attorney of Rezko’s and the sale appeared to be tied to previous debts, according to reports.

    Yes, but again, why is it not developable? Everything in a city is complex to develop because of the patchwork of codes, but that isn’t a small lot. It still has 7500 square feet.


  80. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:01 pm:

    I read it in a fluff piece prior to all the voting. The piece was primarily about Michelle. I’m looking for it now and I’ll post it as soon as I find it.


  81. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:14 pm:

    CORRECTION: I probably should not have used the words “exert influence over a city board”. From my memory of the article, it said she inquired with officials in the city whom she had a previous working relationship. In government, that means you are calling to smooth the process out and make sure you get the permit. I did not mean to imply by that comment that she improperly or unethically exerted influence. Again, its just my cynical view of Illinois government spilling out. I will find the article.


  82. - Vole - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:16 pm:

    Archpundit: “Yes, but again, why is it not developable? Everything in a city is complex to develop because of the patchwork of codes, but that isn’t a small lot. It still has 7500 square feet.”

    With setback requirements, a narrower lot after cutting off 10 feet, and bordering streets on the corner location, the lot appears to be less valuable for building. But the state of non development adds much value, if not economically then aesthetically, to the Obama mansion. Again the lot and house appear to be an integrated unit despite the separate, legal, real estate deeds.


  83. - Bill Baar - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:27 pm:

    Arch please… nothing is complex to develop in Chicago if you know somebody…look at those pics on the trib’s website…


  84. - some former legislative intern - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:38 pm:

    actually, the governor had good press staff. Now they all have been locked into their spin and have spun and spun themselves into a twilight zone of political unreality, yet to them it is very real. In a way, I feel sorry for them. The ship is sinking fast.


  85. - Bud Man - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 5:57 pm:

    From: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/obama/chi-0702240237feb24,1,651860.story

    “On Dec. 28, 2006, land records show, Rezko’s wife, Rita, sold the garden lot she owned next to Obama’s home, transferring it to a company that plans to develop housing there. That sale deed became public this month when it was registered with the Cook County recorder of deeds”

    “Both lots had been part of the same estate, but the owner listed them for sale separately.”

    “The vacant lot once owned by Rita Rezko will be developed by a company owned by former Rezko business attorney Michael J. Sreenan.”

    “He said he has hired an architect and is discussing plans with the alderman and the city Landmarks Commission.”

    If the land was transfered to a company for development, why is it back on the market? Maybe the current owner found out it couldn’t be developed, but that isn’t a good sales pitch, is it?


  86. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 6:04 pm:

    FYI, the lot is completely buildable


  87. - Chi Metro Correctional - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 6:25 pm:

    Anon - 6:04pm

    Tony? Is that you? Get back in your cell!!

    Prisoners are not allowed to use computers!


  88. - save a horse ride a harley - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 6:37 pm:

    Blabbyhoff tries to tell us that the govenor is a part of the “team” but he was not asked to appear at the press op for the Obama candidacy. He is to lobby govenors for support. How dumb do they think we are? What do you think the Senator from Mass thought when he read the press reports of Baloneyvich tossing Obama under the bus? Me thinks that if GRod has grand illusions of moving to a higher office that those “delusions” are now completely dead, finito. You don’t mess with the Democrats rising star and live politically for another day. GRod is radioactive within his own party both locally and nationally. The man cannot think; what was to gain from using the grade school tactic of “they did it too.” The feds are squeezing real hard and hopefully soon this bunch of clowns that are supposed to be running the state will be gone. Rezko is to GRod as Fawell was to Ryan. The screws are tightening and the bunker is getting hot and stuffy with nobody bringing in any fresh air.


  89. - save a horse ride a harley - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 6:47 pm:

    So sorry, it was not Blabbyhoff, it was Becky who tried to spin why the Govenor was not invited out of the bunker to attend the presser. My bad.


  90. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 7:33 pm:

    which Becky? I thought Becky from Filan/Budget went
    to work for Obama.


  91. - Arthur Andersen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 7:38 pm:

    Arch- when you say “bid” on the house, are you talking about a formal bid process or the more typical “get your written offer to the seller’s agent by 4 pm” most commonly seen in residential property sales? Just curious.

    Further, Bud Man, to keep your “project” accurate, you should say that Rezko was “one of about a hundred co-chairs” for a 2003 Bush fundraiser, not that he “hosted” it.

    Finally, I bet Meigs Field will reopen before any house gets built on that lot. Combining the high price of the ground, the tiny net buildable area, the landmark requirements, and even the possibility of being next door to the POTUS’ home make that lot about as desirable as Cousin Frank’s waste dump. Besides, what alderman in his/her right mind is going to sign off on that zoning and p*** off the Obamas?


  92. - save a horse ride a harley - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 7:42 pm:

    Rausch. Another of the bald face liars employed by Elvis to try and convince us that he is the savior.


  93. - If it walks like a... - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 8:24 pm:

    Almost 100 comments show that the real estate deal can be sliced and diced many ways with the imagination taking the story many directions. This feeding frenzy is fueled by the fact that BO won’t come clean with his version as he is being asked to do by many. I come from the position of liking many things about BO but being very troubled by the real estate issue. Without getting technical or parsing every part of the real estate transaction (they are always complicated with many variables)here are some of the things that I find disturbing.
    1. BO approached TR for “help” on the purchase of his own home at a time he had to know TR was the subject of many stories about influence peddling and he also had to know he was involved in some messy financial deals.
    2. There was no plausible reason for TR to bid on the lot other than to help BO-a sitting US Senator. He did help him by assuring there would be a simultaneous closing of the two parcels, since he apparently bid the asking price-no surprise that he was the high bidder.
    3. The result is that BO gets the house on terms acceptable to the seller without having to take on the debt and find a down payment for something in the area of 30% of the total package. We have no proof, but we can assume that based on friendship, if nothing else, that TR would not let something happen on the lot detrimental to BO’s enjoyment and use of the house. TR gets a parcel essentially of no practical value on which he will incur taxes and other expenses.
    4. Again, the principals won’t tell us much about how and why they put this together, but it was certainly not a coincidence and certainly plausible that they coordinated their efforts to achieve the end of BO getting a house and a passive side yard for the price of the house only. We know the lot had to be bought by someone for this to happen and we can only speculate as to how it happened that BO’s bid on the house was acceptable to the seller.

    All of this would probably be ok legally and morally and none of anyones particular business if one principal were not a US Senator who now takes the high road in a bid for the presidency and the other was not a controversial figure who even the Senator acknowledges as someone he should not have dealt with on this.

    Bottom line plain talk-it is very disturbing and should get all the attention anyone wants to give it.


  94. - Chicago Cynic - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 8:51 pm:

    Arch,

    You make many interesting points. Unfortunately one point you make just isn’t supported by the facts. You say Barack has answered every question asked about the deal.

    Ask the reporters about this - either local or national reporters - and they’ll tell you a very different story. They’ll tell you how they send questions that the Obama people consistently stonewall. They’ll tell you how difficult the Obamas and the sellers have made it to track down the seller. They’ll tell you that their questions are still outstanding. I know because I’ve talked with many of them and that’s what they’ve told me.

    I don’t think Barack did anything legally wrong. But for a guy that claims to be the progenitor of a different kind of politics and who is absolutely on the warpath against the Clintons for “saying anything to get elected”, the walls of his glass house are getting mighty thin.

    This stuff is fair game and will be fully investigated until seller finally talks about what really happened. And if you think the media or the Clintons are unfair to bring this up, what do you think is going to happen when the Republicans start hammering him with it. Lynn Sweet has said that’s already happening. The TV ad scripts practically write themselves.

    Many people are upset about this (myself included) because they see an early strategic decision to stonewall this stuff coming back to haunt Barack should he become the nominee. He’s violated rule #1 about embarassing information. Get it all out early. Don’t obfuscate. Share the documents. This whole thing sounds an awful lot like old style Chicago politics to me. And for a guy I believe is a cut above, that’s just sad.


  95. - amy - Wednesday, Jan 30, 08 @ 10:40 pm:

    in effect, this is a loan. shouldn’t there be
    some campaign finance laws that involve a
    personal financial transaction when someone
    is raising money personally and through others
    for an elected official?

    maybe the feds are looking at the personal
    financial relationship and the benefits
    that Rezko got from standing in the glow
    of the golden guy.


  96. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 12:33 am:

    ===With setback requirements, a narrower lot after cutting off 10 feet, and bordering streets on the corner location, the lot appears to be less valuable for building. But the state of non development adds much value, if not economically then aesthetically, to the Obama mansion. Again the lot and house appear to be an integrated unit despite the separate, legal, real estate deeds.

    So now it can be developed. This is exactly what I’m talking about when people go through this thing of making hard claims and then well, not so much, and then well, it’s not as good as before, but you know all these factors would make it slighly less.

    It’s still a 7500 square foot lot. It isn’t that hard to develop that space.


  97. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 12:50 am:

    ===2. There was no plausible reason for TR to bid on the lot other than to help BO-a sitting US Senator. He did help him by assuring there would be a simultaneous closing of the two parcels, since he apparently bid the asking price-no surprise that he was the high bidder.

    This is what’s strange about everyone trying to logically deal with the issue–is there any reason the owners wouldn’t have sold for $25,000 less? Given the sellers real estate agent made it clear that it was listed originally as two lots and in the NBC story she specifically says that the condition of the listing was that the two lots had to close on the same day, this sort of extrapolation is a bit weird.

    Tony was trying to do a favor, but he didn’t offer enough over the other guy to make much of a difference.

    ===3. The result is that BO gets the house on terms acceptable to the seller without having to take on the debt and find a down payment for something in the area of 30% of the total package. We have no proof, but we can assume that based on friendship, if nothing else, that TR would not let something happen on the lot detrimental to BO’s enjoyment and use of the house. TR gets a parcel essentially of no practical value on which he will incur taxes and other expenses.

    You do realize the Obamas have a mortgage on the house right? That’s listed in the Trib stories. It was $1.32 million so you are suggesting that they take out a mortgage for nearly 2 million.

    Why are you assuming all of this? There is a practical value. A 7,500 acre lot after the sale of the strip is a pretty decent sized lot that sits on a corner.

    ===4. Again, the principals won’t tell us much about how and why they put this together, but it was certainly not a coincidence and certainly plausible that they coordinated their efforts to achieve the end of BO getting a house and a passive side yard for the price of the house only. We know the lot had to be bought by someone for this to happen and we can only speculate as to how it happened that BO’s bid on the house was acceptable to the seller.

    Except most of this has been checked out by the investigative reporters who confirm the lot being listed separately, but requiring the same closing date, the situation of the sellers, and that the high bids (offers if you like) were taken.

    I don’t think anyone doubts that Rezko was trying to pull something, but given the story matches up to what the reporters have found, the essential burden of proof people are trying to make is for someone to prove a negative.

    In terms of why Obama’s offer was acceptable, the house had been on the market for months and it sold at about the same price as what the family had paid for it previously. Why is that suspicious?

    I understand skepticism, but I don’t understand the desire to create vast conspiracy theories when the facts appear to check out according to those who have looked at it. At that point, there is nothing one could do to demonstrate that Obama told the truth–any hypothesis has to be falsifiable so what would it take to get there?


  98. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 12:52 am:

    ===te deal can be sliced and diced many ways with the imagination taking the story many directions. This feeding frenzy is fueled by the fact that BO won’t come clean with his version as he is being asked to do by many.

    But if you listened to Novak and Chase, their issue isn’t with the land deal beyond it was dumb. They seem to think it checked out–they are more curious about the extent of Rezko’s fundraising for Obama. It strikes me that the land deal is pretty well understood though and that he was pretty upfront about it. Where he’s been cagey is the extent of the fundraising Rezko did as a bundler.


  99. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 12:58 am:

    ===in effect, this is a loan.

    How is it a loan? I’m particularly baffled by this claim since I can see how one gets to it being an gift in the sense that if it was never developed Obama could have used it. But how does this equate to a loan in anyway?

    ===shouldn’t there be some campaign finance laws that involve a personal financial transaction when someone is raising money personally and through others for an elected official?

    We could move to public funding and I’d like that, but you do realize that the Clintons would have done something wrong in Whitewater if that was the case. It was bogus, but people they were in a personal financial relationship with also donated to them.

    ====maybe the feds are looking at the personal
    financial relationship and the benefits
    that Rezko got from standing in the glow
    of the golden guy.

    Maybe. But there isn’t any actual evidence that they are. Maybe the Feds are considering Barack Obama is an alien.


  100. - Vole - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 6:07 am:

    Archpundit, let me be a little more clear.

    My quote: ===With setback requirements, a narrower lot after cutting off 10 feet, and bordering streets on the corner location, the lot appears to be less valuable for building. But the state of non development adds much value, if not economically then aesthetically, to the Obama mansion. Again the lot and house appear to be an integrated unit despite the separate, legal, real estate deeds.

    Your reply: “So now it can be developed. This is exactly what I’m talking about when people go through this thing of making hard claims and then well, not so much, and then well, it’s not as good as before, but you know all these factors would make it slighly less.

    It’s still a 7500 square foot lot. It isn’t that hard to develop that space.”

    By less “valuable” I did not mean in dollar terms. I meant in desirable attributes. I can only speak to my own tastes, but a narrower, corner lot abutting streets would be my last choice of a building site.

    But, there can be no denying that the lot adds a buffer between the Obama house and the street. And that buffer was enhanced by a common wall and landscaping blocking the street view. Aesthetically, the empty, non developed lot adds much more appeal and value to the Obama house as one integral property vs. two.


  101. - Me, too. - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 6:28 am:

    Hey Archpundit:

    You have posts from 1:42 PM to 12:58 AM.

    What do you do for a living? Stare at this blog?

    Ol’ Arch needs to get a life.


  102. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 8:05 am:

    Hi Amy,

    No, I run a lot of statistical algorithms that mean I’m waiting a lot. But thanks for asking.


  103. Pingback McLean County Pundit » THURSDAY: MORE ON OUR GOVERNOR AND ILLINOIS HEADLINES - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 9:23 am:

    […] GO TO CAPITOL FAX AS ALWAYS FOR FULL POLITICAL COVERAGE […]


  104. - Anonymous - Thursday, Jan 31, 08 @ 10:32 am:

    Latest word on Rezko trial is that his defense team was offered an extra week to prepare for the trial… but his attorney says Rezko doesn’t want to wait and would like his trial to start SOONER than scheduled.
    Maybe I’m reading too much into this but could this mean that after just a couple of nights in jail he’s itching to spill the beans and get it over with?


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