December 10th, 2008
12:59 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama calls on Blagojevich to resign

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Obama is now calling on Blagojevich to step down."](CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama Wednesday joined calls for Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to resign.

"The president-elect agrees with [Illinois] Lt. Governor Quinn and many others that under the current circumstances it is difficult for the governor to effectively do his job and serve the people of Illinois," Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

On Tuesday Blagojevich was arrested on federal conspiracy charges. Prosecutors alleged in their complaint that Blagojevich pressured candidates to replace Obama in the Senate for campaign contributions and other benefits.

Gibbs said Obama also supported legislation that will be considered by Illinois lawmakers on Monday to authorize a special election to choose his successor.

Obama believes Illinois lawmakers should "put in place a process to select a new senator that will have the trust and confidence of the the people of Illinois," Gibbs said.

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soundoff (551 Responses)
  1. Jason from Chicago

    Where do you people get your info from? Blago and Obama former friends?? GIVE ME A BREAK!! Blago helping Obama getting elected?? PLEASE, you have to be kidding! That would be giving WAY too much credit to Blago, and no credit to Obama. Obama didn't appoint Blago to governor. Blago didn't appoint Obama to the senate. Illinois voters did that, which is completely independent from each other. Quit trying to link the two together. Just because people work together does not make them close friends, and Obama has bigger issues to worry about than who is going to be appointed to senate, so stop acting like Obama has a hand in all of this. How many of your co-workers are you GOOD friends with? I got a Christmas card from the governor a few years back, should I be worried that people will think I'm in on this scandal too, because we're "good friends"?

    December 10, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  2. Pat Pa.

    No matter how hard you idiots wish, Obama is not involved in this. They, the FBI, have it right in Blagojevich's own words.

    As for his bail, where is he going ? He is being watched like a hawk by EVERYBODY.

    BTW—Although not my favorite person, Sarah Palin's name should not be mentioned whenever ANYTHING happens. Give it up. She had nothing to do with this.

    December 10, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  3. Kevin in Ohio

    Wait just a cotton-pickin minute!!!!! Some writers here are mad that Republicans might be connecting the dots and –possibly and potentially– tying this to Obama? What the heck do they think the Republicans have endured for the last eight years..... nothing but slime and innuendo from the left. Get over it, lefties..... one (more) of yours is corrupt. And there will be more, I guarantee it. If it leads back to Obama, in any way, shape, or form, then you'll have to suffer the same slings and arrows that you hurled in the past.

    At this moment, I applaud Obama for calling for this slimeball's resignation. How about that? I've rarely heard anything similar from the left.

    December 10, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  4. Lauren

    Of course Obama wants him out of the picture. He sure does not want them to dig too deep before his name comes out of the dirt.

    December 10, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  5. merry lee p

    Mr. President elect made the right move. A New America is on the horizon. It is long over due.

    December 10, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. Patty

    Vanessa December 10th, 2008 2:50 pm ET
    BTW I just LOVE the Obama haters. He's the President. Deal with it. Or move to Canada.

    George Bush is the president. Deal with it or move to Canada, chickie!

    I don't have to move anywhere! I'm an American, I have freedom of speech - and I can accept a president but still be critical of him if I don't agree with him. Got that ???????????? Good !!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 10, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  7. Babs

    How in God's name did Mr. Obama come out of the most corrupt polititcal State so "squeaky clean". Me thinks I smell a RAT.

    December 10, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  8. Anne

    Veronica – Frankie IS right. Why don't you take the advice of your compatriots and READ and educate yourself. Rove didn't out plame, but he was convicted in the news (including 'fair and balanced' news outlets. As soon as it was discovered it was a democrat the news hushed up.

    December 10, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  9. G.R.I.T.S. - Girl Raised in the South

    Marc: you're a liar. You know you voted for McCain and not Obama. Quit pretending you are a dem!

    December 10, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  10. MollyO

    Even the tapes demonstrate Blago's frustration that the Obama folks aren't going to "play the game". Change has come and, if you try to bring the new prez down for THIS then you haven't been listening...Time to come together and quit letting the distractions keep us from setting the country back on the right course. We have more important things to do.
    BTW, as Dan Abrams suggested this a.m., Blago's only defense might be insanity...what was he thinking?

    December 10, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  11. Lawrence of Sinking Spring

    Good move Mr. President!

    December 10, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  12. Lauren

    Marc,,, is that KoolAid you drank before Nov 4th now giving you indigestion????????

    December 10th, 2008 2:40 pm ET
    I'm ashamed that I voted for Obama. The election was barely a month ago and he's dealing with a scandal

    December 10, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. obama supporter in NC

    from what i have read and heard, PE Obama had nothing to do with the Gov and any real conversations. All of you trying link these men are ridiculous and need to get a life...

    December 10, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  14. Scott

    It doesn't hold water to try to connect Obama and Blago even on premise that they discussed the potential appointees because he is on tape saying that "they(The Obama Administration) wanted to give him nothing, but their thanks and gratitude." This clearly indicates that Obama had no part in any sort of bribery that would have transpired, those of you who consider this to be more than that are only putting your contempt for Obama and bitterness about Sarah and Jonny Mac losing on display.

    December 10, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Desperate Times...

    Isn't it funny how Repukes jump all over this like their party is free from corruption! We've seen more corrupt Repukes in the last 8 years than I care to count! Grow up! There is NO PROOF whatsoever that Obama has anything to do with this. You know it and I know it so knock it off. You're only making yourselves look even more ridiculous than you already do (and that's quite an achievement!).

    December 10, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  16. Liz from Utah

    Nicholas, Nigeria:
    You rock!! I agree with you. We need to support our next President. The country is not in good shape right now. Obama is very smart and capable. YES, WE CAN!! Go Obama!!

    December 10, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  17. Jerry

    We have seen this movie before, tarnishing Obama with the scum bag Blegovich. They may have talked professionally but seriously doubt the involvement of the President-elect. Although, I do not know everything but Obama had been challenged before and came with a flying colors. No need for distraction, we are approaching 2009 to dig ourselves out from the muddy situation we are in. Deal with it, Thank you!

    December 10, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  18. JL

    I heard on another station that Rham Emanuel was the guy who turned the Governor in for trying to sell the Senate seat.

    Also, by the Governor's comments about how the PE wouldn't give him anything but appreciation shows Obama wasn't in on any of this.

    Besides, I am unclear on exactly what charges are being brought against Blagojevich...Did he actually do something besides run his mouth? I'm not saying I am on his side, it's obvious he's corrupt. I just haven't heard the media say what hard evidence the FBI has or actual crimes committed. The only thing I have heard is a bunch of threats he made that never happened and some bad language, which last time I checked, isn't illegal. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

    December 10, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  19. Badger

    I just want to say "THANK YOU" to Larry from Penn. People before you make comments trying to tie President Elect Obama to this jerk EDUCATE yourselfs. Heard the GOP ask about transparency from the Obama cabinet that anyone that has spoken with this jerk speak up. Maybe noone has spoken with the Gov. but if noone speaks up they will say that the cabinet is not being tranparent. Obama is going back on his word on transparecy. Give me a break people. Please Please Think!!!

    December 10, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  20. Ron

    Why do you idiots think that the corrupt governor and Obama were friends. Don't follow the news. He said that he didn't like Obama because he wouldn't play ball. Please educate yourself before posting. If I wanted to read nonsense about unsubstantiated ramblings I would read my teenage sons emails.

    December 10, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  21. LLM from MD

    When will these lawmakers get it!! PE Obama had nothing to do with this...did you hear how foul Blagojevich spoke of PE Obama? And you folks still think PE Obama knew....heck he would not play in his game...he even said PE Obama would be a problem for them....STOP LOOKING FOR DIRT!!

    December 10, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  22. Jackie in Dallas

    John Galt, for the literarily challenged, is the main character of the novel "Atlas Shrugged" by author Ayn Rand. Her main theme in all of her books is, according to Wikipedia:

    "Rand advocated rational individualism and laissez-faire capitalism, categorically rejecting socialism, altruism, and religion. Her ideas remain both influential and controversial."

    What the context of the use of this literary reference is to the story can only be surmised, but I presume it's because the character of John Galt looks out only for himself, which Governor Blagojevich certainly is doing. However, there is a world of difference between "rational individualism" and corruption.

    December 10, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  23. Lis

    I moved out of Illinois because of the policitcal corruption in Chicago. I have always said "never trust a Chicago politician".... OOPS! We will have one as President in January. Stay tuned America......

    December 10, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  24. Jackie in Dallas


    You seriously need to read the 76-page transcript of the wiretaping before you connect President Elect Obama with this scumbag. He repeatedly cursed Obama for basically not giving him the time of day. As in the five candidates that he was considering, there has been no connection linking any impropriety with the President Elect or the candidates with Blagojevich.

    And if you don't think McCain wouldn't have brought his own baggage to the White House, I have two words for you: Keating Five. He is STILL friends with Keating, and still numbers a bunch of lobbyists for some pretty sticky subjects as both friends and contributors.

    December 10, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  25. sandee in Portland

    @marc.....right, you voted for Obama like I voted for Mickey Mouse LOL.

    For all you non Obama fans, you all keep trying to make it sound like our PE is involved in all kinds of scandal. Sure, he's from Chicago, but that doesn't make him a liar or a crook. I'm sure that our FBI has investigated him to hell and back and if there was anything in his past that was crooked or unethical, we would have heard about it from the sources that are in the know which aren't you. You only know what rumors are flying around the net and through the right wing media.

    So get over your Rezko, Ayers, unethical governors etc. There's not one politican out there that's been in office for more than 6 years that's not dishonest. That's why there should be term limits on these people so they aren't in office long enough to want to make it a monetary gain for themselves.

    December 10, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
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