Illinois GOP House delegation blasts Blagojevich commutation: 'The face of public corruption'

Illinois’s Republican congressional delegation criticized President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Bob Woodward book will include details of 25 personal letters between Trump and Kim Jong Un On The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' Biden commemorates anniversary of Charlottesville 'Unite the Right' rally: 'We are in a battle for the soul of our nation' MORE’s decision Tuesday to commute former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s (D) sentence, saying he is “the face of public corruption” in the state.

“We are disappointed by the president’s commutation of Rod Blagojevich’s federal sentence. We believe he received an appropriate and fair sentence, which was the low end of the federal sentencing guidelines for the gravity of his public corruption convictions,” wrote Reps. Darin LaHoodDarin McKay LaHoodOn The Money: McConnell previews GOP coronavirus bill | Senate panel advances Trump Fed nominee who recently supported gold standard | Economists warn about scaled-back unemployment benefits Bipartisan bill introduced to provide tax credit to food and beverage distributors House Republican introduces bill to provide tax credit to businesses for PPE MORE, John ShimkusJohn Mondy ShimkusBottom line Bottom Line Overnight Energy: Trump rolls back Obama-era fuel efficiency standards | Controversial Keystone XL construction to proceed | Pressure mounts to close national parks amid pandemic MORE, Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerWin by QAnon believer creates new headaches for House GOP Hillicon Valley: GOP lawmaker says 'no place in Congress' for QAnon after supporter's primary win | Uber CEO says app could temporarily shutdown in California if ruling upheld | Federal agency warns hackers targeting small business loan program Trump campaign spox rips GOP congressman over rejection of QAnon conspiracy MORE, Rodney DavisRodney Lee DavisWatchdog calls for probe into Gohmert 'disregarding public health guidance' on COVID-19 Massie plans to donate plasma after testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Key 48 hours loom as negotiators push for relief deal MORE and Mike BostMichael (Mike) J. BostMORE.

Blagojevich was removed from office in 2009 and was later convicted on corruption charges, including trying to sell former President Obama’s Senate seat after he was elected to the White House in 2008. The former governor began serving a 14-year prison sentence in 2012.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Blagojevich is the face of public corruption in Illinois, and not once has he shown any remorse for his clear and documented record of egregious crimes that undermined the trust placed in him by voters,” the GOP lawmakers said. “As our state continues to grapple with political corruption, we shouldn’t let those who breached the public trust off the hook.”

Illinois House Republican leader Jim Durkin also denounced the commutation, saying on Twitter, “We have a massive federal investigation into corruption in the state of Illinois and this action distracts and dilutes what I think is the proper role of the Department of Justice — to root out corruption … I don’t agree.”

Announcing the commutation of Blagojevich, a onetime “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant, Trump cited in part his wife Patti’s frequent TV appearances urging for clemency and called Blagojevich’s sentence “a tremendously powerful, ridiculous sentence in my opinion, and in the opinion of many others."