Internal Review Clears Transition in Senate Probe - Black Enterprise

Internal Review Clears Transition in Senate Probe

Findings from am internal review conducted by President-elect Barack Obama’s transition team when released will clear Obama and his staff from participating in any inappropriate contact with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, says Obama.

“There is nothing in the review that was presented to me that in any way contradicted my earlier statements that this appalling set of circumstances that we’ve seen arise has nothing to do with my office,” said Obama.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, asked the state Supreme Court today to remove Blagojevich from office, claiming he is unfit to serve. Also, her father, Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan appointed a bipartisan committee to review potential impeachment proceedings. Mike Madigan, the former co-chairman of Blagojevich’s re-election campaign and many other Illinois Democrats are now eager to force Blagojevich out. Lisa Madigan is considered one of the top Democratic candidates for governor in 2010.

Obama distanced himself from Blagojevich last week when the governor was arrested for making statements about bartering the senate position to procure an appointment for himself and his wife.

Rahm Emmanuel, Obama’s chief of staff, was caught on court-approved wiretaps talking to Blagojevich, but Obama in a press conference today to announce his energy team, did not directly address whether or not Emmanuel had spoken to the governor about the senate position.

“There was nothing that my office did that was in any way inappropriate or related to the charges that have been brought,” said Obama.

Obama said that the review was thorough and comprehensive and that he was prepared to release the results, but that the U.S. Attorney’s office requested that he wait until Dec. 22. Obama is complying in order to not interfere with an ongoing investigation.

Marcia A. Wade is a reporter for