President-elect Obama has denied any direct contact with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. He hasn’t denied that others may have been in contact with Blagojevich. From the criminal complaint it seems that Blagojevich knew that he wasn’t going to get a deal from Obama, leading many to believe that did attempt to (either directly or indirectly) cash in by offering to appoint Obama’s close friend and adviser Valerie Jarrett for the Senate seat for a price.
Blagojevich indicates in the transcripts that he knows that he won’t get a deal from Obama. How did he know that? One would presume that he knew that because he asked.
If Emanuel was aware of the pay for play scheme (Note: There’s no evidence of that yet) things might get much messier for Emanuel and Obama. Consider the following scenario:
- Blagojevich tries to strong-arm Emanuel for money to select Obama’s preferred candidate.
- Emanuel balks at the “pay for play” plan.
- Emanuel takes no further action.
That means the Chief of Staff to the President-elect knew of a plot to auction off the President-elect’s former Senate seat and did nothing to stop it. That’s not good.
Emanuel better hope there’s nothing to connect him, or anyone else in the transition team, to the Governor’s scheme or Obama’s going to have to throw someone else under the bus…