Monday, June 27, 2011

Blagojevich Found Guilty On Multiple Counts of Corruption

All that fabulously coiffed hair did nothing to save former Illinois Governor Ron Blagojevich from a jury finding him guilty on multiple counts of corruption from trying to sell President-elect Barack Obama's US Senate seat.
Mr. Blagojevich, a Democrat whose former aides say once saw himself as a presidential contender some day, was found guilty of 17 counts of wire fraud, attempted extortion, bribery, extortion conspiracy and bribery conspiracy. He was acquitted on one charge of bribery, and the jury deadlocked on two counts of attempted extortion.

The verdict appeared to be the conclusion, at last, to the spectacle of Mr. Blagojevich’s political career, which began its spiraling descent shortly after Mr. Obama was elected president in November 2008. A month after Election Day, Mr. Blagojevich, who under state law was required to pick a new senator to replace Mr. Obama, was arrested, and federal agents revealed that they had secretly recorded hundreds of hours of damaging phone calls by him and his advisers.

Mr. Blagojevich, a lawyer and former state and federal lawmaker, was accused of trying to secure campaign contributions, a cabinet post or a high-paying job in exchange for his official acts as governor — whether that was picking a new senator, supporting particular legislation or deciding how to spend state money.

The outcome came as a victory for federal prosecutors, whose earlier trial of Mr. Blagojevich resulted in a deadlocked jury on most counts and led people to wonder whether Mr. Blagojevich’s behavior would ultimately be deemed crass political deal-making but not a crime.
Good riddance to bad hair.

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