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Blagojevich on tape: Get Obama to fund-raise from Warren Buffett, Bill Gates

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Sarah Ostman
Chicago Sun Times
June 25, 2010

In the next tape, Blagojevich is heard floating another idea — to ask the president-elect to ask Warren Buffett or Bill Gates to throw $15 million into a health-care related charity account that Blago could manage and live off. In exchange, of course, he’d appoint Valerie Jarrett to Obama’s Senate seat.

Blago had just seen on the news that Obama didn’t want Jarrett in the Senate anymore; instead, he was considering her for a cabinet post. But Blago’s not convinced, and he floats this new fund-raising idea.

Rod: This is one of those things where you’re the president-elect of the United States. His people, they go get the money.
Harris: I think that’s a lot easier for them than an appointment, sure…
Rod: You go to these big Democratic multi-billionaires … and you ask them all to give 2, … a couple million each … That’s all they got to do for Valerie Jarrett… that’s not hard for them.

Harris wasn’t so convinced — the Obama camp “may have higher priorities,” he said from the stand. But he didn’t fight the idea.

“I was just being agreeable with him,” Harris said in court. “Just keeping the conversation moving along. There was other matters i was hoping to get to.”

Later on the tape, Blago says he wants Harris to find some other Senate candidates.

“Why don’t we start looking for an African-American Tammy Duckworth? We can, can’t we?” he is heard asking.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Judge Zagel has called a lunch break. We’ll resume at 1:30.

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This article was posted: Friday, June 25, 2010 at 4:24 am





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