Blagojevich makes brief comment to press

December 12, 2008 8:20:16 PM PST
Gov. Rod Blagojevich went to his attorney's office and met with him on Friday afternoon. He made his first comments to the media since the news broke of his arrest earlier this week. When asked if he had anything to say to the people of Illinois, the governor said, "I'll have a lot to say at the appropriate time," said Blagojevich.

Earlier in the day, the governor told several pastors that he's innocent and will be vindicated when all the information comes out.

Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich once again left his Northwest Side home without commenting on the scandal Friday, as one of the politicians touched by this scandal, Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., continues to deny any wrongdoing.

Several ministers visited the embattled governor at his home Friday morning, offering prayer to help him weather the corruption scandal that threatens to end his political career.

"The man has children here. Any father can really sympathize with media swamping the house, small children, you know, so our prayers go out to the family. That's the real issue here today. We aren't here to make any type of political statement," said Rev. Ira Acree, Greater St. John Bible Church.

Others offered support as well, but the Rev. Leonard Barr and his wife, Rita, gave no indication if the governor was leaning toward resigning or staying in office while fighting federal corruption charges.

After the visit, the governor left his home for what is expected to be another day of work at his downtown office. So far, Blagojevich has had nothing to say publicly about the government's criminal complaint, which sparked his arrest and described a pay-to-play scheme for President-elect Barack Obama's Senate seat.

The complaint also detailed a Senate Candidate #5. Jackson has identified himself as Senate candidate #5. According to the Chicago Tribune, when Jackson meets with the U.S. attorney, officials will want to know about an alleged meeting between the governor and Jackson's brother Jonathan Saturday.

Published reports indicate it happened at a fundraiser sponsored by an Oak Brook businessman when he discussed raising a million dollars for the governor's campaign to encourage Blagojevich to select Jackson to fill Illinois' vacant Senate seat. Two days later, the governor met with Jackson to talk about Obama's Senate seat.

"I was granted that interview where I presented my credentials to the governor, and no emissaries were sent. No one was authorized to talk to the governor on my behalf," Jackson said.

The scandal appears to be affecting the financial health of the state as well. A bond issue has been delayed. State officials say that could affect the way the state pays its bills.


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