The Blago/Obama/Blackwell pay-to-play circle

The news media reported this in pieces but never put the whole thing together. Essentially, Chicago entrepreneurs Robert Blackwell Jr. and Sr. were good friends to Barack Obama and Rod Blagojevich (campaign contributions) and Obama and Blagojevich were good friends to the Blackwells.

A chronology:

2001–Barack Obama gets an $8,000 a month legal consulting contract from a company owned by Robert Blackwell Jr. at a time that Obama is low on money.

2002–Barack Obama writes a letter to the State of Illinois urging a state grant be given to another company owned by Robert Blackwell Jr.

2002-2004–Blackwell Jr.’s company was given $320,000 in grants by the state of Illinois. The grants increased greatly under Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

2005 — Robert Blackwell Sr. gets a $650,000 computer consulting contract from the University of Chicago Medical Center that is hailed in the hospital’s annual report as an example of minority contracting. Part of Michelle Obama’s job description is encouraging minority contracting.

Blackwell Jr.’s paid advisor was Obama’s first political director and was close to Blagojevich’s most important ally in Springfield, the former state Senate President.

Obama’s people continue to insist that Obama has no real ties to Blagojevich but the Blackwells show once again that claim is false.

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Were both Blago and Obama lying about Auchi?

Federal prosecutors were successful in revoking Tony Rezko’s bond in early 2008 when they found out the infamous Illinois fixer had taken $3.5 million from British/Iraqi billionaire Nadhmi Auchi without telling the court. Auchi is a controversial figure closely linked to Saddam Hussein over the years. For background on Auchi, check here and here. It’s [...]

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He had the political courage Obama lacked

There was one Democrat in 2006 who dared take on Rod Blagojevich’s re-election bid. His name wasn’t Barack Obama, of course, he endorsed Rod, corruption and all. He was Edwin Eisendrath, who ran against Rod in the Democratic primary. He was interviewed recently by Steve Rhodes of the website Beachwood Reporter. Beachwood: Obama stood behind [...]

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