I’m Not Seeing A Problem For Rahm

December 18, 2008

Many of my friends on the Right are worked up over this Sun Time's item under Lynn Sweet's banner. But I can't see anything in it that tells me that Rahm Emanuel has real a problem. There may be some confusion here over "spoke directly," granted. To begin with, this has already been reported. I posted on it, STALU has the video up on YouTube from the 12th via Fox News. So it isn't new news. And Blago or his people could even be lying.

Given that Rahm was at the last O-presser, reportedly smiling, my guess is he went to Blago somehow saying Obama wanted Jarrett for the seat. No crime or surprise in that.

My current working theory is that it was then or soon after they learned that Blago wanted a serious and potentially illegal quid pro quo. Everyone in Chicago assumed Blago was wired so they asked around, perhaps went to the Feds. Jarrett's name was subsequently withdrawn. Maybe Rahm had Blago do some more talking for the Feds and has been asked to keep it confidential, just as Fitzgerald asked Team Obama to not release their internal report.

Either way, at most you have a mis-statement and I'm not confident we have that. If someone sees a smoking gun here, sorry, I can't see much to get excited about at all.

CHICAGO–President-elect Barack Obama's incoming chief of staff Rahm Emanuel had a deeper involvement in pressing for a U.S. Senate seat appointment than previously reported, the Sun-Times has learned. Emanuel had direct discussions about the seat with Gov. Blagojevich, who is is accused of trying to auction it to the highest bidder.

Emanuel talked with the governor in the days following the Nov. 4 election and pressed early on for the appointment of Valerie Jarrett to the post, sources with knowledge of the conversations told the Sun-Times. There was no indication from sources that Emanuel brokered a deal, however.

A source with the Obama camp strongly denied Emanuel spoke with the governor directly about the seat, saying Emanuel only spoke with Blagojevich once recently to say he was taking the chief of staff post.

But sources with knowledge of the investigation said Blagojevich told his aides about the calls with Emanuel and sometimes gave them directions afterward. Sources said that early on, Emanuel pushed for the appointment of Jarrett to the governor and his staff and asked that it be done by a certain date.

At least some of the conversations between Emanuel and Blagojevich were likely caught on tape, sources said.

After Jarrett took herself out of the running in mid-November, Emanuel submitted a list of suitable names to the governor's camp that didn't include her name.

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  1. IslamoLlama says:

    “– Either way, at most you have a mis-statement and I’m not confident we have that. If someone sees a smoking gun here, sorry, I can’t see much to get excited about at all. –”
    Score one for Dan. :-p

  2. jharp says:

    “I’m Not Seeing A Problem For Rahm”
    As of today there is no evidence of a problem. Of course that could change but in the absence of any evidence you are 100% correct.
    I’m starting to believe that Blago is dumb as a doorknob and only someone equally as dumb would even consider getting involved.

  3. SpaceCat says:

    Wow, Dan. THis is a surprisingly intellectually honest post. It’s posts like these that keep me coming back to your site. It’s nice to see that you can think clearly once the initial fever of scandal-mongering abates.
    And again, it’s impossible for me to believe that anyone in the Obama camp would be stupid enough to even consider doing bidness with Blago. Everyone – except, apparently, the moron himself – knew he’d been wired for years.

  4. J'hn1 says:

    Well, if Rahm has a political problem, it will be either from his home district (which is not, to the best of my knowledge, under investigation at all) or his personal home not paying property taxes due to the “charitable foundation” that purportedly owns it, and just happens to let him and his wife live there (for free?)

  5. Denniis D says:

    Unless of course they also had Rahm wiretapped as well and captured other dirt on him..