Illinois Republicans to Trump: Don’t free Blago 

By John Dempsey, WLS-AM News

(CHICAGO) All seven Illinois Republican Congressmen have signed a letter to President Donald Trump, urging the President not to commute the prison sentence of ex-Governor Rod Blagojevich.   The members of the Illinois Republican congressional delegation say commuting the sentence would damage efforts to fight public corruption.

Trump recently said he thought the prison term given to Blagojevich was excessive, and that he was considering commuting the sentence to time already served.   Blagojevich has served over 6 years of a 14 year term after being convicted of a wide-ranging corruption scheme, including plotting to sell the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by then President-elect Barack Obama, and shaking down the head of a children’s hospital for a political contribution.

The Republican lawmakers signing the letter to Trump, Darin LaHood of Peoria, John Shimkus of Collinsville, Peter Roskam of Wheaton, Randy Hultgren of Plano, Adam Kinzinger of Channahon, Rodney Davis of Taylorville and Mike Bost of Murphysboro, say letting the ex-Governor out of prison before his sentence is up would “set a detrimental precedent.”

The Republicans also say the only reason Blagojevich did not actually sell the Senate seat is because he called off the plan after learning from the media that federal authorities had been wiretapping his phones, and their letter tells Trump that commuting Blagojevich’s sentence would “send a damaging message on your efforts to root out public corruption in our government.”

Last week Blagojevich formally filed paperwork asking Trump to commute his term.

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