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|Attorney: Jesse Jackson, Jr. is "Senate Candidate Five"
|U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Chicago) is outraged that his name has been tied to an alleged scheme by Gov. Rod Blagojevich to sell or trade the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by President-elect Barack Obama.
James Montgomery Sr., a Chicago lawyer retained by Jackson, read from a prepared statement Wednesday that his client has "never authorized anyone to seek the governor's support in return of money, fundraising or other thing of value."
Montgomery says his comments assume that the congressman is "Senate candidate five" as listed in the federal complaint against the governor, though he added he "could not swear it under oath."
According to the complaint, an associate of "Senate candidate five" promised Blagojevich a total of $1.5 million in campaign contributions if "Candidate five" was appointed to the vacant Senate seat. That associate would allegedly work with the "other guy" to obtain the funds.
When asked if he believes someone was setting his client up, Montgomery responded that he wouldn't put it past politicians and fundraisers to purport to be Jackson without authority.
Montgomery says Jackson has been receiving phone calls asking if he had "been arrested yet," something that his client is "outraged over."
Montgomery says Jackson has talked with the U.S. attorney's office and was assured that he was not a federal target.
Jackson last met with Blagojevich for 90 minutes on Monday. Montgomery says there was no talk of pay-to-play and that his client produced his credentials, qualifications and desire for the Senate appointment.
Montgomery says the congressman still plans to run for the seat. He says his client has done nothing wrong, and he will cooperate fully with the U.S. attorney and the FBI.
(Illinois Radio Network)
|12 10 08 by Newsroom
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