Update on those FitzBlago Subpoenas: Unending Subpoenas, Unending Wiretaps

United States of America v. Rod Blagojevich and John Harris

The Chicago Sun-Times reports
on the results
of a FOIA inquiry that has released 44 subpoenas issued to Illinois Gov. Rod
Blagojevich in the ongoing cluster of investigations about him since he was
first elected in 2002:

“Responding to open-records
requests, the governor’s office released 44 subpoenas it had been swamped with
since 2005. Two have been issued since Blagojevich’s Dec. 9 arrest.

“The most recent
subpoenas went to the state Capital Development Board and the Illinois
Department of Transportation on Dec. 11. They sought records on “bid
proposals submitted by and/or awarded to” 22 contractors, including
several who have contributed large sums to the governor’s campaign fund.”

 

I
previously posted a
blog
on subpoenas issued by the feds, as I was told, the same morning that
Blagojevich and top aide John Harris were arrested. Assuming that the subpoenas
previously referred to are the same as some of the subpoenas just released, it
looks as though my informant was off by a day:

“Two other subpoenas to the
governor’s office came on Dec. 8, the day before the governor was arrested on
corruption charges that accused him of, among other things, trying to sell an
appointment to replace Obama in the U.S. Senate.



“Those
subpoenas asked for records relating to Patti Blagojevich; her business, River
Realty; the governor’s brother, Robert Blagojevich; the governor’s campaign
fund, and 30 other people and companies, including Axelrod and Jarrett. Jarrett
was alluded to in the Dec. 9 criminal complaint against the governor as a
potential Senate candidate Blagojevich was considering. Axelrod did not surface
in the complaint. Neither is charged with any wrongdoing.”

 

The records make clear that the office of U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald has gone back to court over and
over again–44 times in all, according to this most recent report–to get
authorization for subpoenas about Blagojevich, whom Fitzgerald all but
campaigned against in the 2002 gubernatorial election.

It is also clear from the charging document filed in the
arrest of Blagojevich that the feds went back to court repeatedly to get
authorizations for more and more wiretapping.

Apparently no small number of subpoenas, no small number of
documents, and no small number of wiretapped telephone
conversations–Fitzgerald has acknowledged “thousands” of
“intercepts” so far–was sufficient to build a case against
Blagojevich. Also, no small amount of time, no short extent of years was
required. The investigation has extended from 2003 (at latest) until even beyond
the date of our last presidential election, on
Nov. 4, 2008. The feds just could not find a way, apparently, to put
together a case against Blagojevich until such time as it involved future White
House personnel. And then they had to rush into action just when Blagojevich
was allegedly bloviating against the Chicago
Tribune
,
Chicago

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