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Rod Blagojevich is a con man

The real heroes in this case are the FBI agents and prosecutors whose work paved the way for Blagojevich to be sent to prison.

Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich (L) speaks outside his house on Feb. 19 after President Donald Trump commuted his sentence for corruption.
Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich (L) speaks outside his house on Feb. 19 after President Donald Trump commuted his sentence for corruption.
Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski | AFP via Getty Images.

Rod Blagojevich claims he was a political prisoner. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Blagojevich is a con man. He is a properly convicted felon, based on his acts of corruption as governor of Illinois. A jury of his peers found him guilty of many charges, among them conspiring to sell the Senate seat of Barack Obama along with shaking down a children’s hospital and a suburban racetrack to receive campaign contributions. He was the architect of his own demise.

The real heroes in this case are the FBI agents, the former United States attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, Patrick Fitzgerald, and his prosecution team. Their work paved the way for Blagojevich to be sent to prison.

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President Donald Trump commuted Blagojevich’s sentence. Trump was under the mistaken belief that one of his detractors, James Comey, was involved in developing the case against Blagojevich. This mistaken information was supplied by Blagojevich’s wife in her scheme to have Trump commute the sentence. The truth is, Comey had left the Department of Justice in 2005 and was in private practice until 2013 when then-President Obama appointed him to the position of director of the FBI.

Abraham Lincoln once said. “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.” Those who oppose corruption will not be fooled by Rod Blagojevich.

Daniel M. Locallo, retired judge, Circuit Court of Cook County

Illinois needs to tax pensions

What a lame attempt at justifying the case for a graduated income tax! (in your editorial “The case for a fair tax grows stronger with Pritzker’s new budget — or budgets”). Once again, the proverbial elephant in the room is ignored! You so boldly state that “this editorial page has argued for reducing pension benefits,” however not one word about taxing pensions is uttered. Illinois is one of only 3 states of the 41 that have an income tax that chooses to not tax pensions (public or private). Every credible study says that this policy leaves well over $2 billion per year on the table.

Political expediency reigns as rattling the public employee unions is avoided, at literally all costs.

Anthony E. Speiser, LaGrange