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*** UPDATED x1 - Despite claim, ad is highly edited *** Blagojevich talks about Pritzker in Rauner’s latest TV ad

Monday, Feb 5, 2018

* They’re not yet going after Ives and are sticking to their basic messaging. Press release…

Today, the Rauner campaign launched the latest in the series of ads featuring JB Pritzker and the infamous Rod Blagojevich FBI wiretaps.

JB Pritzker’s voice is not featured in this newest ad, but money talks and Blagojevich was listening. The ad features Blagojevich talking about raising millions of dollars from Pritzker and giving him Barack Obama’s Senate seat in return.

Blagojevich closes the conversation saying, “incidentally [Pritzker] asked me for it. Don’t repeat that.”

Pritzker may claim he did nothing wrong, but Blagojevich’s implications are clear: Pritzker was asking for the Senate seat and could match the price tag.

Don’t repeat that.

* Rate it

I don’t think Pritzker asked Blagojevich for the Senate seat. He wanted the treasurer’s job if Alexi Giannoulias got a White House gig as was rumored at the time.

*** UPDATE *** The ad claims the audio is “The unedited FBI wiretap of Rod Blagojevich talking about JB Pritzker.” It’s not unedited. From the full transcript with the quotes used in the Rauner ad highlighted

BLAGOJEVICH: “501(c)(4) issue advocacy, 10, 15, 20 35 million dollars in an organization like that. But, I, we can get goin’ with an ind-, you know a board that, you know I’m comfortable with and then when I’m no longer governor I go over there. What about that?”

SCOFIELD: “I think it’s worth explorin’.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “I betcha JB can raise me money like that.

(UI)

BLAGOJEVICH: “For a Senate seat. Huh?”

SCOFIELD: “Yep.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “If I can get JB to do somethin’ like that is it worth, ah, givin’ him the Senate seat? Incidentally, he, he asked me for it. Don’t repeat that.”

SCOFIELD: “He did?”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Yeah.”

SCOFIELD: “Huh. Okay.”

(PAUSE)

SCOFIELD: “Man I don’t know. That’s a hard one to do.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “What’s that? JB?”

SCOFIELD: “Yeah.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Huh?”

SCOFIELD: “Yeah.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Yeah you’re darn right it’s hard. But if you have an organization that, you know you go out and advocate and, and he’ll help fund it by getting some of his billionaire friends to, to invest in it. Huh?”

SCOFIELD: “Tempting.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Um, you, you, look, I really believe you can do more good than just putting Valerie Jarrett there and get nothin’ back.”

[BREAK]

BLAGOJEVICH: “(Sighs) 501(c)(4). How’s that sound to you? $10 million dollars, $15 million dollars.”

SCOFIELD: “Ah, it sounds good to me.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Issue advocacy that will last beyond me bein’ governor. Somethin’ I can work on. Try to do other things. What do you think of that?”

SCOFIELD: “I think it’s a good place to land.”

[PAUSE]

BLAGOJEVICH: “Okay. JB, he can do it, couldn’t he?

SCOFIELD: “Ah, sure, JB could do it.”

BLAGOJEVICH: “Who knows him, that we know that’s close to him? Mmm, that I don’t know.”

[PAUSE]

SCOFIELD: “I don’t know, Greg from my office knows him, but is not real close to him. But you know I could ask Greg who’s close to him. I can find out.”

[PAUSE]

BLAGOJEVICH: “I mean I don’t wanna be the one to ask somethin’ like that. Alright. No I can find out.”

SCOFIELD: “I’ll find out who’s close to JB.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

55 Comments
  1. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:42 am:

    It’s smart for Rauner to stick to his game plan, at least for now. Needing three or four whacks at the ad in a month isn’t great, but it’s better than being sucked into Ives’ blackhole.


  2. - Real - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:42 am:

    This ad won’t change any minds or sway people to vote for the failed Gov Rauner.


  3. - Cheryl44 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:44 am:

    Rauner’s ads are boring.


  4. - 360 Degree TurnAround - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:46 am:

    The joke could be on the Rauner crew here. Maybe, just maybe, Blagojevich didn’t want that repeated because…JB didn’t ask for it.


  5. - BlackHawk Boone - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:47 am:

    Two peas in a pod


  6. - TopHatMonocle - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:48 am:

    Maybe he said don’t repeat that because Pritzker didn’t really ask for it? Just a thought.


  7. - Iggy - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:49 am:

    anyone who doesn’t think this ad will have an impact has their head in the sand. Keep telling yourself that this is fine.


  8. - Retired Educator - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:50 am:

    The Governor is making a big mistake. He should worry about the opponent he has now, not the one he may have later. You have to win the one you are in, before you get to go to the championship game. Ives is his opponent now, and for some reason he doesn’t understand the damage she can cause.


  9. - DHS Jim - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:51 am:

    Wise strategy to not mention Ives considering how she made Rauner look like a fool in their debate before the Tribune editorial board.


  10. - BlackHawk Boone - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:53 am:

    @retired educator

    There is no way Ives can win the IL primary. There may be a small subset of Republicans that share her hateful prejudice, but this is Illinois, not backwater Louisiana


  11. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:54 am:

    ===…anyone who doesn’t think this ad will have an impact has their head in the sand. Keep telling yourself that this is fine.===

    Rauner…

    31-55 in approval/disapproval.

    Rauner is a failed governor. This ad does nothing to change that.

    You think this ad will move 24 points to the positive for Rauner?

    Social services, higher education, labor… Rauner still wants all three destroyed… and they know it.

    But, “becsuse Blago” will help.


  12. - 19th Ward - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:54 am:

    I content that this series of ads has less to do about influencing the democratic primary (as seems to be the general consensus) and more to do with disaffected republicans. Rauner will beat Ives. He’s trying to handicap Pritzker early because Rauner knows there are probably many GOP voters who would rather sit November out than vote for him (Rauner); but they probably won’t sit out if they get to vote against Pritzker who Rauner has begun to paint, and will likely continue to paint, as the epitome of Madigan-minions of tax-and-spend, corrupt, pay-to-play democratic politicos in this state. Just wait until after the primary when Rauner turns to one of his favorite political themes: zip-code politics. Tar-and-feather JB now, start going after Chicago vs. the rest of the State by July.


  13. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:54 am:

    ==The Governor is making a big mistake.==

    He needs to more forcefully go after her, but I don’t think he needs to change up his ad campaign. Yet.


  14. - wordslinger - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:54 am:

    Steps on the previous ad, doesn’t it?

    Not as powerful as the second spot where Pritzker makes the direct ask for treasurer, but builds on the narrative of Blago and Pritzker being in cahoots.

    Did the Rauner campaign get this off the Trib website, too.


  15. - Robert the 1st - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:56 am:

    =Maybe he said don’t repeat that because Pritzker didn’t really ask for it?=

    And when they air the ad of JB asking for the senate seat the echo chamber here will start chanting that JB did nothing illegal.


  16. - Retired Educator - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:57 am:

    Blackhawk; I agree with you, but the damage she is doing, and will do in the future is going to leave a big mark. If he doesn’t defend himself he will look weaker then he already is. With all his assets, a counter attack seems in order.


  17. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:58 am:

    ==And when they air the ad of JB asking for the senate seat==

    Where’s that audio?


  18. - Anon1888 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 9:59 am:

    I’m not a huge fan of millionaires and billionaires in office, so Rauner or JB are not on my short list of choices for IL governor. Regardless if he asked for the seat or not, JB’s voice is present on phone conversations with Blago. It’s bad enough when Rauner and the GOP tie a candidate to Madigan, let alone Blago.

    The Democratic Party needs a clean candidate.


  19. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:04 am:

    ==Regardless if he asked for the seat or not, JB’s voice is present on phone conversations with Blago. ==

    Yeah, but dude was Governor. Try as we all did, we couldn’t all just ignore him.


  20. - wordslinger - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:05 am:

    –And when they air the ad of JB asking for the senate seat the echo chamber here will start chanting that JB did nothing illegal.–

    You heard that, during the Blago trial? Did the Trib publish that one? I don’t recall it.

    Can you provide a link on it? Or are you just a sooth-sayer, peering into the future?

    You realize there’s already a spot where Pritzker specifically says he wants the treasurer gig, correct? Do you think he wanted both at the same time?


  21. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:05 am:

    If I were on the BTIA, I would get a camera crew and ask Arthur Jones, Republican candidate for the 3rd district, if he supports Ives. He said that he is not supporting Rauner and I figure he’s not supporting Pritzker. If the BTIA can get Jones on video supporting Ives they can run this ad everyday until March 20, and her goose is cooked.


  22. - Hedley Lamarr - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:06 am:

    It’s absolutely clear that JB is the only Democrat that Rauner has a chance of beating. Which makes these ads seem more pique than politics.


  23. - AndyIllini - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:08 am:

    “This is Illinois, not backwater Louisiana”

    Because fighting for the right to dismember your baby before it’s even born is the height of sophistication.


  24. - Anon0091 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:11 am:

    “And when they air the ad of JB asking for the senate seat the echo chamber here will start chanting that JB did nothing illegal.”

    Didn’t happen. In fact in the 14 minute ad, it’s quite clear he didn’t ask for or want the Senate seat. So I get Rauner is trying to muddy up JB any way he can, but his own ad shows this one is just a Rod flight of fancy.


  25. - Conn Smythe - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:15 am:

    Had this tape been reported on/released by Tribune? If there’s now a direct conduit between the leaker of the tapes and Team Rauner, I don’t know how the USAO can be ok with that.


  26. - Anon1888 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:16 am:

    @ Arsenal-

    There are viable democratic candidates that aren’t on wiretap tapes with Blago - that also have governing experience and a voting record.

    If we need JB money to win the governorship over Bruce Rauner, the Democratic Party is in poor shape.


  27. - Anonymous - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:25 am:

    ==anyone who doesn’t think this ad will have an impact has their head in the sand.==

    Spot on! For reasons that are obvious, Rauner wants Pritzker out of the game.


  28. - Cheryl44 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:25 am:

    When we were neighbors I talked to Blago a lot. Should I be in jail too?

    Oh and Andy, we want abortions to be legal, safe and rare. That’s what we’re fighting for.


  29. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:27 am:

    ==It’s absolutely clear that JB is the only Democrat that Rauner has a chance of beating.==

    As opposed to the under-resourced and disorganized Kennedy or the running-against-his-own-legislative-record Biss? Rauner has a chance to beat all 3. All 3 have a chance to beat him. Nothing is given.

    ==There are viable democratic candidates that aren’t on wiretap tapes with Blago - that also have governing experience and a voting record.==

    OK. That doesn’t make talking to Blago a sin. I’m still not really in the mood to give Bruce Rauner a veto over who the Democratic Party nominates.


  30. - Duhhh - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:28 am:

    ==He should worry about the opponent he has now==
    Ives is on the ballot but she isn’t really an opponent. I doubt she’ll get 35% in the primary.


  31. - Duhhh - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:31 am:

    ==It’s absolutely clear that JB is the only Democrat that Rauner has a chance of beating.==

    huh? Rauner would love to go against Biss.


  32. - Practical Politics - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:35 am:

    @Anon0091:

    Your last comment presupposes that there aren’t any more tapes and that we have heard everything. I would not be willing to accept that as a fact. My guess is that there will be more recordings to listen to.


  33. - Anon0091 - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:45 am:

    Practical Politics,

    “Your last comment presupposes that there aren’t any more tapes and that we have heard everything.”

    No, my last comment presupposes that he didn’t want the Senate seat, which he didn’t. And it’s pretty clear if you hear the long tape, which Rauner so helpfully shared, that he loved the idea of Lisa Madigan getting the Senate seat. He was positively giddy about it on the tape which is a pretty odd reaction for a guy who wants it himself.


  34. - Responsa - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:55 am:

    The ad is hard to understand because Blago’s voice on the recording is muffled. But when the words are printed out it’s powerful reinforcement of prior ads about JB and his sketchy relationship with Blago. I guess the ad’s over all effectiveness will hinge on whether voters are more likely to view it or hear it.

    As far as not going after Ives, why would Rauner bother? She’s publicly executing a fine job of doing herself in without any outside help from her primary opponent.


  35. - SOIL M - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 10:57 am:

    Rauner is ignoring Ives because she does not matter. He will win the Primary. Sad to say, but with no other decent candidate in the race, its his. He is running against Pritzker in the General already. And yes these ads will have a negative effect on jb. Rauner will continue to hammer him with ties to Blago, throw in Madigan ties, run the “Crooked Chicago Machine” spots downstate, and hope to actually get people out to vote. Right now many republicans are thinking about sitting out the election this year, so the hope that he has is to get enough to hold their nose and vote for him while getting democrats to sit out because they cant vote for someone so tied to Blago.
    Pritzker as the Dem nominee might actually be Rauners best chance to win again. And he is hitting him early and hard while Pritzker has to focus elsewhere.


  36. - Anonymous - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:03 am:

    ==You think this ad will move 24 points to the positive for Rauner?==

    No. But it is bad for Illinois in general. Some frustrated that there is no good choice in the next election.


  37. - Blue dog dem - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:11 am:

    Tremendously damaging to the Pritzker campaign.


  38. - OneMan - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:30 am:

    This ad won’t change any minds or sway people to vote for the failed Gov Rauner.

    It may, however, convince people not to vote for JB which accomplishes the same thing.


  39. - Leave a Light on George - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:46 am:

    “Yeah, but dude was Governor. Try as we all did, we couldn’t all just ignore him.”

    About the only people taking/listening to Gov. F bombs calls at the point in time of these recordings were the FBI and people who wanted something from him. Like JJJ and JB.


  40. - Lucky Pierre - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:48 am:

    I finally changed my mind and agree with you guys for once.

    I will vote for JB in the primary, he has zero chance to win the general election against Governor Rauner.

    Don’t repeat that


  41. - Just Observing - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 11:49 am:

    The ad certainly isn’t helpful to Pritzker, but Blago’s own voice makes it pretty clear he is scheming in his own head that JB Pritzker has the means to “buy” the seat… not that Pritzker offered to “buy the seat. Lots of people (not all of course) will understand this… that Blago was concocting all sorts of cons in his head and JB was just one of his targets.


  42. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 12:06 pm:

    ==About the only people taking/listening to Gov. F bombs calls at the point in time of these recordings were the FBI and people who wanted something from him.==

    “About” is doing a lot of work in that sentence.

    He was the sitting Governor. Plenty of people kept talking to him. And sure, now, with the benefit of hindsight, it’s a political problem for all of ‘em. But it’s not clear why it’s anything more than a political problem.


  43. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 12:45 pm:

    ===I will vote for JB in the primary…===

    Arguably, the most honest comment “Lucky Pierre” ever typed?


  44. - Besmirched - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 12:45 pm:

    =He was the sitting Governor. Plenty of people kept talking to him. And sure, now, with the benefit of hindsight, it’s a political problem for all of ‘em. But it’s not clear why it’s anything more than a political problem.=
    Agree totally. There are many who talked to the sitting governor or his staff about political appointments, that was not unusual.
    This is a good reason why the tapes shouldn’t be released. To me there’s more of a story on why people get to violate a federal court order without consequence.


  45. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 1:26 pm:

    Interesting. Thanks for the full transcript, Rich.
    So Blagojevich seems reluctant to contact Pritzker about the Senate seat and is looking for someone close to him. Which contradicts Blagojevich saying JB asked for the seat.


  46. - wordslinger - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 1:35 pm:

    Yeah, that’s a wee bit edited.

    Geez, these guys continue to lie when they don’t have to. Not the best way to roll out your corruption spot.


  47. - Shytown - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 1:38 pm:

    Is it even worth rating? I don’t think this tactic is going to have the desired effect. Ultimately this strategy of going after Pritzker says that Rauner considers him the one Dem that can beat him in the General. Otherwise Rauner would be running ads about Biss’ Super PAC and all that $$$ Madigan donated to it.


  48. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    I’m shocked that Rauner and company would be misleading to the point of a falsehood! Shocked!


  49. - Arsenal - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 1:44 pm:

    ==So Blagojevich seems reluctant to contact Pritzker about the Senate seat and is looking for someone close to him.==

    It also contradicts the idea that Blago and JB were particularly close, which I actually believed.


  50. - Frankly - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 2:26 pm:

    I don’t see why Blago and Pritzker not being “close” when this was recorded proves Pritzker didn’t ask for the senate seat. We know that at some point (before or after this?) Pritzker asked Blago for the Treasurer position, and Blago asked Pritzker for a bunch of money. Were they close then? Who knows? You don’t need to be close to make shady deals with each other, though as Blago suggests here, it might be an advantage.

    Not sure the unedited version of the ad changes much at all.


  51. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 2:54 pm:

    I didn’t think about “closeness but, if Pritzker had already talked to Blagojevich about the Senate seat then why was Blagojevich so nervous about talking to Pritzker about the Senate seat. This transcript makes Blagojevich look insane.


  52. - Responsa - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 3:28 pm:

    The conversation seems to be heavily weighted on the amount of the money ask–not about whether they should ask about JB’s interest in the seat.


  53. - DuPage - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 4:14 pm:

    Just like at the trial, edited, out of context, and incomplete tapes can be totally misleading.
    Rauner’s claim that the ad is unedited is not true. No surprise there.


  54. - Rich Miller - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 4:29 pm:

    Anyone notice that Rod dropped almost all of his g’s?


  55. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, Feb 5, 18 @ 5:24 pm:

    OMG, Rich I didn’t. Good catch lol.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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* Hawk: I Did It My Way
* Goodbye, Hawk


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