Obama’s Senate seat for sale on Ebay

… sort of. It’s been taken down now, but the Seattle Post-Intelligencer managed to snag a screencap of it.

In the end, the actual item wasn’t of Obama’s Senate seat, but instead of something related:

Update: The real bid item is hidden down page.

“You are bidding on ONE printed photograph of Rod Blagojevich, which you will receive in the mail.”

And the seller self-identifies, “I’m just a poor student journalist in need of grocery money.”

Update: Someone has created a wish list for the Governor on Amazon.com.

Among the items on the wish list are shower shoes, a copy of “Who Moved My Soap? : The CEO’s Guide to Surviving in Prison” and a copy of “How To Open Locks With Improvised Tools.”

Hey, ya gotta find something in all this to laugh about, right?

A great gift for the conservative male in your life

What could be better to give a guy you care for than a monthly pictorial 2009 calendar of some of the smartest, wittiest conservative women in America? Get yours here! If it’s a gift you give to your hubby or boyfriend, once they open it up and start flipping through it, just make sure to tell them that your picture was supposed to be included but it was a little too risque ;)

To get a preview of each months’ photo, click here.

Now, where’s that conservative male calendar again? Who could we include on it? Well, let’s see. There’s Mark Steyn and Brit Hume and Senator John Ensign and his legislative assistant Otto Mucklo (scroll) and Brit Hume, and Mark Steyn – oh wait …

Hat tip: Katy’s Conservative Corner

Team Barry begins to throw the Chicago machine under the bus

And in the process, they contradict themselves … twice. Jake Tapper reports:

“Obviously like the rest of the people of Illinois I am saddened and sobered by the news that came out of the US attorney’s office today,” said President-elect Obama this afternoon in Chicago, speaking of the criminal complaint against Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich for corruption. “But as this is a ongoing investigation involving the governor I don’t think it would be appropriate for me to comment on the issue at this time.”

Asked what contact he’d had with the governor’s office about his replacement in the Senate, President-elect Obama today said “I had no contact with the governor or his office and so we were not, I was not aware of what was happening.”

But on November 23, 2008, his senior adviser David Axelrod appeared on Fox News Chicago and said something quite different.

While insisting that the President-elect had not expressed a favorite to replace him, and his inclination was to avoid being a “kingmaker,” Axelrod said, “I know he’s talked to the governor and there are a whole range of names many of which have surfaced, and I think he has a fondness for a lot of them.”

Here’s the video:

In an update, Tapper writes:

An Obama Transition Team aide says that Axelrod misspoke on Fox News Chicago.

Translation: He said something he shouldn’t have.

More, from the Tapper piece:

And, it should be pointed out, Mr. Obama has a relationship with Mr. Blagojevich, having not only endorsed Blagojevich in 2002 and 2006, but having served as a top adviser to the Illinois governor in his first 2002 run for the state house.

In the Democratic gubernatorial primary that year, then-state sen. Obama endorsed former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris. But after Blagojevich won, Obama came around enthusiastically. At the same time, meanwhile, Axelrod had such serious concerns about whether Blagojevich was ready for governing he refused to work for his one-time client.

According to Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., Mr. Obama’s incoming White House chief of staff, Emanuel, then-state senator Obama, a third Blagojevich aide, and Blagojevich’s campaign co-chair, David Wilhelm, were the top strategists of Blagojevich’s 2002 gubernatorial victory.

Emanuel told the New Yorker earlier this year that he and Obama “participated in a small group that met weekly when Rod was running for governor. We basically laid out the general election, Barack and I and these two.”

Wilhelm said that Emanuel had overstated Obama’s role. “There was an advisory council that was inclusive of Rahm and Barack but not limited to them,” Wilhelm said, and he disputed the notion that Obama was “an architect or one of the principal strategists.”

(An Obama Transition Team aide emails to note that Emanuel later changed his recollection of this story to Rich Miller’s “CAPITOL FAX,” saying, “David [Wilhelm] and I have worked together on campaigns for decades. Like always, he’s right and I’m wrong.”)

LOL. This isn’t the first time the Obama camp has contradicted itself. See here and here for two other examples of bigtime contradictions during the general election campaign. Clearly, the incoming Obama admin is going to have to work a lot better at being “in sync” and unified with each other on what message they want to present to the public. Perhaps he should get some advice from his pick for Sec. of State on “message control.”

Interestingly enough, rumor has it that it may have been Obama’s COS and fellow a Chic-town politico machinist Rahm Emanuel who tried to help the feds by giving them info on Blago’s “pay to play” scheme. It wouldn’t be surprising if he had a hand in it – after all, the pattern is with Barack Obama to throw anyone under the bus once their usefulness runs its course. Emanuel’s denying the reports, of course, presumably because Obama wants people to think that neither he nor anyone on his staff spoke with Blago even innocently about the issue, so we’ll probably never know who the tipster was. But on the off chance that we do, rest assured that the media will try and portray Emanuel as the “hero” who brought down a Chicago corruptocrat, in spite of the fact that Emanuel (and Obama) both were long part of and beneficiaries of that same machine.


Who is “Senate Candidate Number 5”?

From the affidavit against Blagojevich:

According to the affidavit, one candidate for the senate seat, identified as Senate Candidate 5, promised to “raise money” for Blagojevich. The governor described, in a recorded call, an earlier approach by an associate of Senate Candidate 5.

“We were approached ‘pay to play.’ That, you know he’d raise me 500 grand. An emissary came. Then the other guy would raise a million, if I made him (Senate Candidate 5) a Senator,” Blagojevich was quoted as saying.

Is it Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. or Obama’s kingmaker and outgoing Illinois Senate president Emil Jones, Jr., who expressed interest in the seat this past Sunday? If so, it sounds like Blago might have been heeding the advice/threats from Rep. Bobby Rush.

Enquiring minds want to know …

Tuesday open thread

I’m having a busy afternoon here at the 8-5 … I’ll be back tonight.

In the meantime, don’t miss this heartwarming story about two puppies who kept a lost 3 year-old boy warm for several hours until he was found by the authorities this past weekend. The story gives a whole new meaning to the phrase, “Man’s best friend.”

Big time troubles for Ill. Governor Rod Blagojevich

Another Illinois corruptocrat taken into custody:

WASHINGTON – Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was arrested Tuesday on charges of conspiring to get financial benefits through his authority to appoint a U.S. senator to fill the vacancy left by Barack Obama’s election as president.

According to a federal criminal complaint, Blagojevich also was charged with illegally threatening to withhold state assistance to Tribune Co., the owner of the Chicago Tribune, in the sale of Wrigley Field. In return for state assistance, Blagojevich allegedly wanted members of the paper’s editorial board who had been critical of him fired.

John Harris, the governor’s chief of staff, was also charged, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

Blagojevich, 51, and Harris, 46, both of Chicago, were each charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and solicitation of bribery.

A 76-page FBI affidavit alleges that Blagojevich was intercepted on court-authorized wiretaps during the last month conspiring to sell or trade for personal gain the state’s U.S. Senate seat.

Federal prosecutors have investigated Blagojevich’s administration for at least three years. The governor has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

The Department of Justice alleges that in exchange for the Senate appointment, Blagojevich discussed obtaining:

-a substantial salary for himself at either a non-profit foundation or an organization affiliated with labor unions;
– placing his wife on paid corporate boards where he speculated she might garner as much as $150,000 a year;
– promises of campaign funds — including cash up front; a cabinet post or ambassadorship for himself.

“The breadth of corruption laid out in these charges is staggering,” said Patrick J. Fitzgerald, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. “They allege that Blagojevich put a ‘for sale’ sign on the naming of a United States Senator. The citizens of Illinois deserve public officials who act solely in the public’s interest, without putting a price tag on government appointments, contracts and decisions.”

The full indictment can be read here.

Merry Fitzmas, Barry Oh. On top of the econ crisis you’re trying to get a handle on, now you have the distraction of questions about your governor – and your association with him (and kind words about him) – to deal with. More importantly, it will also bring back to light discussions about the Chi-town political machine that greatly aided your rise to prominence and power.

Let me guess what we’ll hear from Obama spox today: This is not the Gov. Blagojevich that President-elect Obama once knew.

Don Surber quips:

The Chicago machine rolls on. These are our moral and intellectual superiors, kiddies.