* Fox News…
The potential commutation of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s federal prison sentence has been put on hold amid White House officials’ fears of public pushback, sources say.
Two sources told Fox News that on Thursday, Blagojevich, 62, made it to processing for his discharge from a federal prison in Littleton, Colo. However, a commutation was put on hold after a Trump administration official became concerned about opposition to the idea, which the president said he was “seriously” considering.
In a tweet, Trump said the issue was under review.
“Rod Blagojevich, the former Governor of Illinois, was sentenced to 14 years in prison. He has served 7 years. Many people have asked that I study the possibility of commuting his sentence in that it was a very severe one. White House staff is continuing the review of this matter,” he posted.
* I’m told that this statement from the state’s GOP congressional delegation last Thursday had a lot to do with the flip-flop…
Congressmen Darin LaHood (IL-18), John Shimkus (IL-15), Adam Kinzinger (IL-16), Rodney Davis (IL-13), and Mike Bost (IL-12) released the following statement regarding former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.
“It’s important that we take a strong stand against pay-to-play politics, especially in Illinois where four of our last eight Governors have gone to federal prison for public corruption. Commuting the sentence of Rod Blagojevich, who has a clear and documented record of egregious corruption, sets a dangerous precedent and goes against the trust voters place in elected officials. We stand by our letter and urge the President to not commute Rod Blagojevich’s sentence.”
In June of 2018, the entire Illinois Republican U.S. House delegation sent a letter to President Trump opposing the commutation of Rod Blagojevich’s sentence. You can read that letter here.
* I am in the “keep him locked up” camp when it comes to Rod. But the president has teased Blagojevich’s release so many times that I actually started to feel sorry for the man yesterday (and I never thought I’d say that). And I really did feel sorry for his kids. Their hopes have been raised so many times only to be repeatedly dashed on the rocks of presidential indecision.
Amid continuing uncertainty over whether President Donald Trump will commute Rod Blagojevich’s prison sentence, the disgraced former Illinois governor’s family released a statement Monday night reiterating its gratitude toward the president.
“The family is grateful to President Trump, and they are hopeful that their 11-year nightmare might soon be over,” family spokesman Mark Vargas said in a text message that he subsequently released on Twitter.
I suppose they have to cling to their public gratefulness, but I wish the president would make a decision one way or another and finally stick with it and move on.