Complete Blagojevich case coverage

Gov. Rod Blagojevich

Gov. Rod Blagojevich (Tribune file photo by Nancy Stone)

Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich was arrested December 9, 2008 and indicted on April 2, 2009 on federal fraud charges, for among other things, trying to sell Barack Obama's Senate seat. Get the latest on his case here.

January 30, 2009

A politician's rise, hard fall

A confrontational leadership style, a penchant for pushing populist programs without the money to pay for them and serious questions about his ethics all weakened Blagojevich's standing.

January 29, 2009

The defense doesn't rest

SPRINGFIELD — His career tattered but his dramatic flair intact, Gov. Rod Blagojevich reversed course Wednesday and accepted the Illinois Senate's challenge to explain in person why it shouldn't toss him out of office Thursday in a historic impeachment vote.

January 28, 2009

Rod Blagojevich

FBI plays wiretaps of Rod Blagojevich at state Senate impeachment trial

Governor's voice is heard at Senate trial--via recording--in what FBI says is a pay-to-play deal

January 9, 2009

Blagojevich impeached

House panel unanimously approves report accusing Gov. Rod Blagojevich of wide range of offenses

SPRINGFIELD — Paving the way for an unprecedented House vote Friday to impeach Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a legislative panel unanimously approved a scathing report accusing the two-term Democrat of a wide array of offenses, including criminal corruption and wasting taxpayer money.

January 5, 2009

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid calls Gov. Rod Blagojevich 'corrupt'

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called Gov. Rod Blagojevich "corrupt" Sunday and accused him of trying to divert attention from his criminal case by falsely alleging Reid opposed African-American candidates seeking Illinois' Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

2:27 AM EST, December 30, 2008

'We're fighting shadows'

SPRINGFIELD — Heading toward a decision on the ultimate political sanction, members of a House impeachment committee Monday rejected complaints by Gov. Rod Blagojevich's attorney that he was battling "shadows" in his fight to keep the disgraced governor in office.

December 23, 2008

Lisa Madigan denies asking for Senate seat

As the scandal surrounding Gov. Rod Blagojevich unfolds, Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan is hardly a disinterested observer. A potential candidate for governor in 2010, Madigan unsuccessfully sought an Illinois Supreme Court ruling that Blagojevich was unfit to govern. She began an investigation into his administration, but stepped aside in favor of U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald. Here are edited excerpts from an interview with Madigan late last week.

December 19, 2008

Impeachment talk turns to policy

SPRINGFIELD — Lawmakers turned away from the federal corruption charges against Gov. Rod Blagojevich and focused Thursday on other reasons to impeach him, highlighting a string of controversial policy moves as evidence of an autocratic and wasteful approach to governing.

December 18, 2008

Blagojevich impeached

Blagojevich strikes back

Disgraced Gov. Rod Blagojevich joked and jogged in his Chicago neighborhood Wednesday and vowed to tell his side of the story soon, while his attorney tore into impeachment-minded state lawmakers trying to force the governor out of a job.

December 17, 2008

Impeachment panel begins, teeth clenched

SPRINGFIELD — State lawmakers insisted Tuesday they could fairly investigate Gov. Rod Blagojevich following years of criticizing him as a terrible leader as they opened unprecedented impeachment proceedings against him.

December 17, 2008

Rod Blagojevich pal Christopher Kelly to plead guilty in tax fraud case

Christopher Kelly, one of Gov. Rod Blagojevich's most trusted advisers and fundraisers, has decided to plead guilty, court records show, while negotiations appear to be on again for the cooperation of Antoin "Tony" Rezko, another Blagojevich confidant, in the federal probe.

December 16, 2008

BLAGOJEVICH UNDER SIEGE

Impeachment inquiry launched

SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois House launched its first-ever impeachment probe of a governor Monday, promising weeks of hearings detailing Gov. Rod Blagojevich's alleged abuse of power, from enacting massive programs without legislative approval to seeking to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

December 16, 2008

Patti Blagojevich apologizes to neighbors for media 'barrage'

Any hopes of a peaceful holiday season in the Blagojevich neighborhood unraveled last week with the governor's arrest. Christmas carols and jingle bells have to compete with idling news trucks and helicopters, and the first lady is sorry about that.

December 14, 2008

Blagojevich impeached

Uncomfortable spotlight shone on Patti Blagojevich

Even before her voice was heard on covert recordings made by federal investigators, First Lady Patricia Blagojevich was neck-deep in the federal probe of her husband and his administration.

December 14, 2008

How scandal unfolded

Friday, Dec. 5

December 13, 2008

Rahm Emanuel talked with governor's office about who should fill Obama's Senate seat

Rahm Emanuel, President-elect Barack Obama's pick to be White House chief of staff, had conversations with Gov. Rod Blagojevich's administration about who would replace Obama in the U.S. Senate, the Tribune has learned.

December 13, 2008

Blagojevich co-defendant resigns post

John Harris, Gov. Rod Blagojevich's co-defendant in a sweeping political corruption case, resigned Friday as the governor's chief of staff.

December 13, 2008

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. again defends himself in Rod Blagojevich scandal

U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) went on national TV Friday in response to a Tribune report that Jackson allies discussed raising $1 million for Gov. Rod Blagojevich to promote the congressman's appointment to the U.S. Senate.

December 12, 2008

Blagojevich impeached

Blagojevich fundraiser held by Jackson allies Saturday

As Gov. Rod Blagojevich was trying to pick Illinois' next U.S. senator, businessmen with ties to both the governor and U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. discussed raising at least $1 million for Blagojevich's campaign as a way to encourage him to pick Jackson for the job, the Tribune has learned.

December 12, 2008

Sam Zell's financial adviser at Tribune Co. was middleman sought by Blagojevich

As Tribune Co. acknowledged Thursday that it received a federal subpoena as part of criminal charges against Gov. Rod Blagojevich, sources confirmed that a close associate of company chief executive and chairman Sam Zell has been interviewed by the FBI.

11:06 AM EST, December 10, 2008

Rod Blagojevich

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich arrested on federal charges

The predawn rousting of Gov. Rod Blagojevich from his Ravenswood Manor home Tuesday marked a stunning climax to a tale of alleged public corruption unmatched in Illinois' storied history of elected scoundrels and thrust the state into an unprecedented political crisis.

December 10, 2008

Governor's wife supported his pay-to-play Senate scheme, complaint alleges

An unflattering portrait depicting Illinois First Lady Patricia Blagojevich as a modern-day Lady Macbeth who plotted against her husband's perceived enemies and backed his corrupt schemes emerged in court documents connected to the governor's arrest Tuesday.

December 10, 2008

Rod Blagojevich

Chicago Tribune withheld publishing at U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald's request

As the federal probe into Gov. Rod Blagojevich intensified in recent weeks, editors and reporters at the Chicago Tribune balanced a competitive story with a rare request from U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald's office: To hold off on what they uncovered until a key phase in the investigation could be carried out.

December 10, 2008

FBI moves in with pre-dawn call to Blagojevich

Just minutes before 6 a.m. Tuesday, a pair of black sedans and an SUV raced toward the personal residence of Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Chicago's Northwest Side.

December 9, 2008

TRIBUNE EXCLUSIVE

Fed probe widens to Senate vacancy

A three-year federal corruption investigation of pay-to-play politics in Gov. Rod Blagojevich's administration has expanded to include his impending selection of a new U.S. senator to succeed President-elect Barack Obama, the Tribune has learned.

December 9, 2008

Blagojevich hires 208 guards with no prison to guard

Associated Press

April 8, 2007

Governor's ally sought tollway contract

An Illinois doughnut mogul forged ties last year to Gov. Rod Blagojevich, through campaign donations and a real-estate deal involving the governor's wife, while seeking to expand his Dunkin' Donuts business into the state's tollway oases, according to a Tribune investigation.

October 12, 2006

Top Blagojevich adviser indicted

Charges against Tony Rezko, one of the governor's closest fundraisers, could stir firestorm on eve of election

Federal prosecutors alleged Wednesday that Antoin "Tony" Rezko used his influence as one of Gov. Rod Blagojevich's closest advisers and fundraisers to seek millions of dollars in kickbacks and campaign donations from firms seeking state business.

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