Former Illinois guv Blagojevich thanks Trump for commuting sentence

Former Illinois guv Blagojevich thanks Trump for commuting sentence

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Rod Blagojevich, a former Illinois guv dislodged of workplace for trying to pitch Barack Obama’s abandoned U.S. Senate seat, thanked President Donald Trump on Wednesday for travelling his prison sentence and once again proclaimed his innocence.

Rod Blagojevich, the ex-Illinois governor convicted of trying to market Barack Obama’s vacated U.S. Senate seat, speaks outside his house after U.S. President Donald Trump travelled his jail sentence, in the Ravenswood suburb of Chicago, Illinois, U.S. February 19,2020 REUTERS/Joshua Lott

The 63- year-old Democrat was impeached and eliminated from workplace in 2009, and founded guilty 2 years later on of wire scams, extortion and soliciting bribes while functioning as governor.

Among more than a half-dozen individuals pardoned or granted clemency by Trump on Tuesday, Blagojevich was released on the very same day after serving eight years of a 14- year sentence.

” We want to express our most profound and long lasting thankfulness to President Trump,” Blagojevich informed press reporters and curious onlookers as he stood outside his home on Chicago’s North Side, flanked by his spouse and 2 children. Nearby was a sign reading “Thank You Mr. President” and a heart balloon swaying in the breeze.

Trump on Tuesday called Blagojevich’s sentence “greatly powerful, ludicrous.” The president’s decision was criticized by both Democrats and Republicans, consisting of some who said that those founded guilty of political corruption should be held liable.

Speaking to the crowd of about 200 on Wednesday, Blagojevich recited a poem, priced estimate from bible and spoke about the hard living conditions in jail.

” I am returning home today from a long exile, a released political detainee,” Blagojevich stated.

Blagojevich referred to himself as a “Trumpocrat.”

” It’s been a long, long journey,” he said.

Among the observers, Thurgood Papadopalous, held a big poster of Blagojevich’s face but disparaged the previous governor to a press reporter.

” He’s a criminal. Most likely need to have remained in prison,” Papadopalous, 33, said.

Blagojevich appeared on Trump’s “Celeb Apprentice” truth tv program in 2010 while awaiting trial.

” He didn’t take any money. He’s a hero,” stated supporter Milan Kostic,65

Reporting by Karl Plume in Chicago; Composing by Brendan O’Brien; Editing by Scott Malone and Matthew Lewis

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