December 26th, 2008
05:10 PM ET
5 years ago

Rahm Emanuel faces possible subpoena

Gov. Blagojevich's attorney urged the Illinois House panel to issue a subpoena to Barack Obama's Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
Gov. Blagojevich's attorney urged the Illinois House panel to issue a subpoena to Barack Obama's Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

(CNN) - The Illinois House panel considering impeachment charges against Gov. Rod Blagojevich has received a letter from the governor's attorney urging the panel to issue subpoenas to more than a dozen potential witnesses, including incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.

Steve Brown, spokesman for Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, confirms to CNN that the impeachment panel received the letter from Blagojevich attorney Ed Genson.

"The committee has taken that letter under advisement," said Brown, noting the panel's next meeting is Monday morning.

Even if the panel moved ahead with such subpoenas, however, they could still be blocked by prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, who has previously expressed concern about the impeachment panel interfering with his ongoing criminal probe.

Nevertheless, the maneuvering by Blagojevich's camp could provide a distraction for President-elect Barack Obama and top aides just days after they tried to turn the page on the matter by issing an internal investigation claiming no wrongdoing by the transition team.

Genson, Blagojevich's attorney, did not immediately return a call seeking comment on his letter.

soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. bk

    Obama and his Chicago thugs. Anybody that voted for Obama needs their head examined.

    December 26, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  2. pam Eugene OR

    Unlike Bush, I am sure Obama and his staff will cooperate with what ever they can if Fitzgerald allows it. Please remember before you Obama haters jump on this that there is an ongoing criminal investigation..
    Also if you will remember the original statement made by Fitzgerald he said Obama is NOT a target of this investigation. I have no doubt that FACT will get lost in the hateful comments to come.
    Blagojevich even said Obama did not offer him anything. But I am sure you haters will also forget that you actually heard him say that.
    Well, if all else fails in your attempts to discredit Obama you can still try the birth certificate route. Of course that is not working out too well for you haters either!

    December 26, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  3. Boston Irish

    If, according to Obama and his camp, there was NO CONTACT between them and the governor's camp, why do they want to subpoena Emanuel? AND, why would it be taken under advisement? According to Obama, it never happened so what's to be taken under advisement? Getting to stink more and more.

    December 26, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  4. Godluvr

    Distractions! That's the motivation of these PUMA jackazzz!
    They are Democrats in name only. They are borderline be repubs. I hope that Fitzgerald makes them go away quickly.

    December 26, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  5. Al

    The more details come public the better – must eliminate any mud that republicans may try to create.

    December 26, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  6. JM

    No kidding.....gee I though Rahm's investigation of himself, clearing himself was the end of the issue...

    December 26, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  7. Karen - Missouri

    Blago is just trying to cause trouble. It's well-known that Blago doesn't like Obama or any of the people around Obama. Blago and his lawyer should just crawl in a hole and disappear.

    Blago is just doing his usual "get even" game.

    December 26, 2008 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  8. Noah

    He should just pretend he is a republican and ignore the subpoena

    December 26, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  9. Barbara

    The Obama team isn't coming to the defense of Blagojevich & Co., so
    Blago's attorney plans to suck them into the maelstrom.

    CNN is helping by sensationalizing this non-story.

    December 26, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  10. Ex-Republican since Election 2008

    You know, that Blagovich guy is so sickening. Why the hell doesn't he resign and just leave the scene so that we can get the economy moving back on track? Its foolish people like him why we America will never move the hell up.....

    December 26, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  11. Dan, FL

    Yes. Even Obama has to be subpoenaed. These political figures will estroy our country. I do not trust them a bit. These are raw hands and they do not know what they are doing.

    December 26, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  12. Dan, FL

    Yes. Even Obama has to be subpoenaed. These political figures will destroy our country. I do not trust them a bit. These are raw hands and they do not know what they are doing.

    December 26, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  13. Rick

    And so the coverup continues. This is what happens when you elect a corrupt political hack from Chicago to the office of President of the United States.

    December 26, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  14. Dadi

    Blago should resign before the impeachment!!!

    December 26, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  15. BB

    Why does CNN keep projecting news? Tell us how it turned out after it's done. Don't want your pundit's opinion of how it "might" turn out. Geeeez. No real work in the whole world for all the empty heads at CNN? The banks have come clean with what they did with our taxes? All wars are over? Jobs are not being lost? Come on.

    December 26, 2008 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  16. Greg Hodges

    You know it is really sickening how some conservatives are so very desperate to connect the idiocy of Blagojevich to anyone connected to the Obama team. Is there so much poison in their system that they cannot understand there is ABSOLUTELY NO evidance in that regard. Of course we should never let the facts get in their way once their puny little minds are already made up!!!

    December 26, 2008 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  17. Dave, Santa Barbara

    bk–you Bushies think Obama voters should have their head examined?

    Wow.

    Just wow.

    December 26, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  18. DIZIZI31

    A subpeona is nothing more than a notice to appear. Did anyone notice the word "possible" like in maybe, or perhaps but not determined at this time. Failure to appear is newsworthy. CNN report on the healthcare crisis in America. I'm sure at some point CNN will remind the american public of Obama's campaign promise but why wasn't the deplorable state of health care highlighted blogged during the Bush admin? Because no one cared. Poor Obama... A handfull of problems on one hand and a handfull of hope in the next.

    December 26, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  19. Alan

    bk December 26th, 2008 4:31 pm ET

    :Obama and his Chicago thugs. Anybody that voted for Obama needs their head examined."

    Coming from anyone who voted for Bush twice this is pure craziness. Obama isn't in office yet. Your fool still is. From what I see so far, it's only continuing to get worse while your fool is running things.

    Give it some time. Obama's got a pile of miracles to work. I'm sure he'll give you something to snipe at along the way to cleaning up your fool's mess.

    December 26, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  20. Mecrob

    @BK: I voted for Obama... I think YOU need to have YOUR head examined given the alternitive candidates. What...we were supposed to put a corpse in as president with his 'trophy wife' and hillbilly VP?

    December 26, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  21. lakeside176

    Yeah, BK.....anyone who voted for Obama should have their head examined.....just like the ones who voted for Bush.....twice.

    December 26, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  22. adam

    That guy looks guilty!!! Cover up cover up cover up....come on media, get off the Obama Crush and star hounding him like you do Bush!!!!

    December 26, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  23. Arthur James

    Please remember that first Obama said that his staff had no contact with Blago, then later he said there was only limited contact with Blago, then still later he said there was no untoward contact. The story has changed and keeps changing.

    Face it. There was contact, hence a subpoena is in order. Of course the internal investigation showed no wrongdoing – they never do. Whenever I investigate myself, I never find myself guilty of wrongdoing either.

    Remember, Obama promised to use public financing for his campaign and signed an agreement, which he later had no qualms (nor did any of his supporters) about breaking. His integrity has always been in question; he did, after all, cut his teeth in Illinois politics.

    That said, I hope he and his staff come up smelling like a rose and he becomes a great president. We don't need another crook, but we must not hide our heads in the sand either.

    December 26, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  24. T

    lol....and the plot thickens

    December 26, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  25. Irritated in Fl

    Rahm Emanuel is as big a crook as any of them. He's covered under the golden parachute with Obama tho.

    December 26, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
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