John Chase, co-author of Golden: How Rod Blagojevich Talked Himself out of the Governor’s Office and into Prison, says the FBI tapes that Blagojevich wanted to be played at his trial wouldn't have exonerated him. (Photo by Eric Stock/WJBC)
By The Illinois Radio Network
CHICAGO - If you’re feeling bad that ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich is unfairly spending Christmas away from his family, you shouldn’t, according to an author.
The ex-governor is in federal prison in Colorado, serving 14 years for political corruption.
He contended that the FBI wiretap recordings that were used at his trial were selective, and that if the jury could have heard all the tapes, they would have reached a different conclusion.
Not so, says John Chase, co-author of Golden: How Rod Blagojevich Talked Himself out of the Governor’s Office and into Prison, who obtained the complete recordings.
“It’s my opinion that there’s not anything on there that would have exonerated hm. There was no silver bullet for Rod Blagojevich in there that was going to cure him of those accusations,” said Chase, who is a Chicago Tribune reporter, as is co-author Jeff Coen.
Chase says there was talk of political wheeling and dealing that itself would have been legal, such as a scheme in which the Blagojevich would appoint Attorney General Lisa Madigan to the Senate, if her father, House Speaker Mike Madigan, would act on the governor’s legislative agenda. However, that idea was never presented to either Madigan, and Chase says there was nothing exculpatory regarding the governor demanding campaign contributions in order to perform his official acts.