Diary

Did Lisa Madigan know she was on Obama's Senate list?

More to the point, did she know about it before she initiated proceedings to have the courts remove Rod Blagojevich from office? Because if she did, then the article below:

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

[snip]

Another source said that contact between the Obama camp and the governor’s administration regarding the Senate seat began the Saturday before the Nov. 4 election, when Emanuel made a call to the cell phone of Harris. The conversation took place around the same time press reports surfaced about Emanuel being approached about taking the high-level White House post should Obama win.

Emanuel delivered a list of candidates who would be “acceptable” to Obama, the source said. On the list were Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, Illinois Veterans Affairs director Tammy Duckworth, state Comptroller Dan Hynes and U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky of Chicago, the source said. All are Democrats.

Sometime after the election, Emanuel called Harris back to add the name of Democratic Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan to the approved list, the source said.

…has inadvertently raised the specter of a very, very large conflict of interest. If Illinois Attorney General Madigan stands to profit from Governor Blogojevich’s being stripped of the right to name Obama’s successor in the US Senate – and if she was on that list, she stands to profit – and if she was aware of the list, then why did she involve herself in the judicial process? Surely she could have publicly recused herself from the proceedings and had a subordinate make the application to the courts… or at the very least disclosed the situation, perhaps with an affirmation that she would not in fact accept the seat even if offered. I’m not a lawyer, but I would imagine that people want to be extra-careful in these situations, not less so.

Please note, by the way, that I am not asking why Obama had her on that list: she’s the (elected) Attorney General of Illinois in her own right and the daughter of Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan. That makes her a perfectly reasonable potential choice, from the President-elect’s point of view. What I am asking is whether Obama let Madigan know ahead of time that she was being considered for the Senate seat; and if he had, then I want Madigan to explain why she neglected to mention this… ever.


Current front-runner
, or no. Because that same poll that lists her as the current favored candidate among Democratic voters also indicates that they overwhelmingly want an election, not a sleight-of-hand. Not wise to disappoint them, particularly since we get to do this all over again two years from now…

Moe Lane