Wednesday, April 14, 2010


When leadership fails

by Larry Geller

If you think we have governor trouble here in Hawaii…

It’s hard to top Illinois for a leadership failure. Remember Blagojevich?

Here’s a court document that’s a hot item on the Internet right now. It’s from the case against Blagojevich. For a legal document, it’s a surprisingly good read, and might easily make the New York Times best seller list if someone would bind it as a book.

Snipped at random (really, I just moused down a bit):

From what Blagojevich said about appointments to boards and commissions, Monk understood that Blagojevich viewed those appointments as an opportunity to reward big fundraisers or Blagojevich’s supporters. Blagojevich consistently wanted to know who recommended a particular candidate for a board or commission slot. When Kelly and Rezko made their recommendations for people to be on boards and commissions, Monk knew that they were often rewarding people who had made contributions to Blagojevich or who were going to do so.

It’s also a good brain exercise. Here’s the next section I hit at random:

In addition to Financial Institution 1, Harris also spoke with Individual H, an executive at Financial Institution 2, about Blagojevich’s wife’s series 7 license. This meeting was in person at Individual H’s office. Harris asked him to keep her in mind if he heard anything about someone who did not do State of Illinois business. Individual H recommended a company called Financial Institution 3. Harris relayed this information to Blagojevich’s wife, who said that Financial Institution 3 was the company who had sponsored her for her Series 7 license. Harris told Blagojevich and his wife that he had asked Individual H to keep Blagojevich’s wife in mind and this had been his response. Blagojevich was very upset and told Harris that he wanted Individual H and Financial Institution 2 to no longer get anything from the State of Illinois.

I can’t resist one more. There’s so much in this document…:

On October 6, 2008, Blagojevich met with Lobbyist A at the offices of Friends of Blagojevich (“FOB”) offices. During their meeting, Blagojevich mentioned an upcoming announcement he was planning to make regarding a $1.8 billion project with respect to the Tollway. Blagojevich said words to the effect of, “I’ve got Lon going to Construction Executive and asking for $500,000” and “I could have made a larger announcement but wanted to see how they perform by the end of the year. If they don’t perform, fuck ‘em.” Lobbyist A knew that Construction Executive was involved with a trade association that would benefit from the proposed $1.8 billion project. Lobbyist A understood Blagojevich to mean was that he expected that Construction Executive would raise $500,000 in contributions to FOB and that Blagojevich was willing to commit additional state money to the project beyond the $1.8 billion but was waiting to see how much money interested entities raised for FOB before the end of the year.

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