30Mar/140

Blagojevich agreed to let Chicago Tribune reporters lie about the tapes

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Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief

This may come as no surprise, but Rod Blagojevich's get-out-of-jail deal not only involves the federal prosecutors and his defense team, it also included the direct involvement of the Chicago Tribune.

That's because, as part of his deal to get out of prison, Rod Blagojevich agreed to let Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen lie to the public about the wiretap tapes that put him there.

Due to some excellent investigative reporting by Barbara Hollingsworth, who now writes for CNS News, we know that the feds gave Chase and Coen copies of court-sealed tapes and transcripts from the Blagojevich case.

Gee, why would the FEDS do that?

Simple. Chase and Coen were instructed to tell the public that they listened to all the sealed tapes and found nothing interesting on them.

We know differently because Blago was caught on tape talking to some of the top power brokers in the country, including Obama and his chief-of-staff Rahm Emanuel.

So the real question you must ask is:

Why would Rod Blagojevich and his lawyers, who knew very well the explosive contents of the conversations caught on those tapes, allow Chase and Coen to lie about them?

Facing 14 years in federal prison, Blagojevich should have dragged Chase and Coen in front of Judge Zagel and made them tell the court who gave them tapes and transcripts that he had placed under seal. But Blago didn't.

The $64k question is why?

Blago's attorney, Sheldon Sorosky, has confirmed that there is and never was anything stopping Blago from telling the public what is on the tapes, which he insist to this day prove his innocence.

So why did Blago and his attorneys let Chase and Coen's public proclamation that the contents of the sealed tapes confirm his guilt go unchallenged?

And why is Blago pretending he wants the tapes to be unsealed when he is completely ignoring the fact that the Chicago Tribune claims to have copies?

More importantly, why are the feds insisting the tapes stay sealed nearly 2 years after they gave copies to the two Chicago Tribune reporters-who have refused to make them public?

What possible reason could Chase and Coen have not to release the transcripts?

The answer is that Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen are lying to the public, the feds put them up to it, and Blago agreed to go along with the deception as part of his get-out-of-jail deal.

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6Jan/140

CNS News: It’s about Patrick Fitzgerald

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Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief

CNS News understands that the real story in the Blagojevich saga is not Rod Blagojevich, it's former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald.

Rod Blagojevich is just another crooked politician who under normal circumstances in Illinois would never have seen the inside of a courtroom, much less a jail cell.

However, a distraction was needed to cover up crimes the Bush administration was committing, and to clear the path for Barack Hussein Obama to lead the next puppet administration.

You heard right, Fitzgerald was covering up crimes for both Bush and Obama.

Since Fitzgerald and his partners in crime (including the media) were successful, it is now time to let Blagojevich out of jail before he snitches on his fellow criminal government pals.

CNS News recognizes that although Blagojevich is guilty and belongs in jail, in the big picture Blago is just a flea on an elephant's ass.

If you really want to know who the big time criminals are, focus on Patrick Fitzgerald and what he has done. He will lead you right to them. Don't be distracted again!

High honors to Barbara Hollingsworth at CNS News, very astute.

Read CNS article here: 2014 Prediction: A 'Get Out of Jail' Card for Rod Blagojevich

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15Aug/130

Robert Blagojevich ‘comes clean’ and gives up Jesse Jackson, Jr.

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Thomas Barton, Investigative Reporter

<Breaking News>

Robert Blagojevich has come clean during an interview with CNSNews.com reporter Barbara Hollingsworth. Blagojevich told Hollingsworth that Jesse Jackson, Jr. offered a "bribe" to him and his brother, Rod Blagojevich, for the Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama.

And, that it's time for the U.S. Attorney of the Northern District of Illinois to charge him with that crime.

Well, it doesn't get any simpler than that, folks.

Robert Blagojevich just handed Jesse Jackson, Jr. to the feds on a silver platter for attempting to purchase a seat in the U.S. Senate.

The only question that remains is this:

Will Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder allow acting U.S. Attorney Gary S. Shapiro to enforce the law, and indict Jackson?


We will keep you posted.

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22Jul/130

Illinois U.S. Attorney’s Office caught lying

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Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief

Shared Ethics in Government Breakfast Meeting- March 14, 2013

 

On May 6, 2013, veteran reporter Barbara Hollingsworth, who now writes for CNS News, reported that Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen revealed that the feds were their source for the sealed Blagojevich wiretap tapes and transcripts the reporters refer to in their book "Golden."

Following that story, IP2P has just learned this:

Months before Chase and Coen's source was revealed, Randall Samborn, spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney's Office, insisted that the government did not give Chase and Coen access to the Blago tapes or transcripts. That claim was documented in the email below.

From: Randall.Samborn@usdoj.gov
To: < redacted >
Sent: Wed Dec 5 07:28:01 UTC 2012
Subject: RE: Media inquiry re USA v Blagojevich

Let me be clear, the government did not provide the authors access to any non-public materials and I reject your assertion. As I said, we are done with this.

From: < redacted >
Sent: Wednesday, December 05, 2012 1:25 PM
To: Samborn, Randall (USAILN)
Subject: Re: Media inquiry re USA v Blagojevich

Randall

Are you refusing to give me the same access that was given to John Chase and Jeff Coen?

(Name redacted)

Imagine Samborn's surprise when he learned that Chase and Coen "burned" their source by revealing that it was, in fact, the U.S. Attorney’s office that gave them access to the court sealed documents they refer to in their book. Below is Samborn's response when asked about the new development.

From: Randall Samborn (USAILN)
To: < redacted >
Sent: 2013-05-14 18:01:35 +0000
Subject: RE: Media inquiry (Tribune reporters)

No comment

From: < redacted >
Sent: Tuesday, May 14, 2013 12:49 PM
To: Samborn, Randall (USAILN)
Subject: Media inquiry (Tribune reporters)

Mr. Randall Samborn

Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen have revealed that the federal government was the source that provided them with the Blagojevich wiretap tapes and transcripts that were under court seal and never made public.

What is your response to Chase and Coen exposing the Federal Government as their source?

(Name redacted)

Chicago Tribune reporters work for Federal Government

http://illinoispaytoplay.com/2013/05/06/chicago-tribune-reporters-work-for-federal-government/

So, after the feds insisted they did not provide access to the Tribune reporters, and Chase and Coen revealed that the feds did, the federal government has now changed its position to "No Comment."

It’s obvious that the feds gave Chase and Coen access to sealed material, and then lied about it. And that begs this question: Why the lie?

The Tribune won’t ask that question because they’re part of the lie. And the Sun Times won’t ask because they’re complicit in the lie. So we ask it here. Why the lie?

As well as: What other lies during the Blago saga were told by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and advanced by the Tribune?

Developing story......

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18Jul/130

CNS News gets Blagojevich story right

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Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief

Heads up reporting at CNSNews.com sets them apart from the rest of the media. CNS News is the only media outlet that picked up on what is the most important story surrounding the Blagojevich appellate brief filed with the court on Monday, July 15, 2013. THE TAPES! (You know, the ones that Blagojevich wants played and only Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen have copies of)

So, while the MSM put their stenographers on Blago's appeal, CNS News, who employs real Journalists, came away with an important story everyone else in the media is missing.

CNS News Excerpt:

Blagojevich’s lawyers also claimed that Zagel “misled” the jury regarding the legal standards needed to prove fraud, extortion and bribery by “excluding evidence of the defendant’s good faith” and “misstating" his defense in Zagel’s instructions to jurors.

Five days prior to Blagojevich’s arrest early on Dec. 9, 2008, Chicago Tribune reporter John Chase called his press aide and informed him that the governor was being wiretapped by the FBI. Blagojevich instructed his brother, Robert, to call off a meeting he had scheduled with Jackson supporter Raghu Nayak.

Prosecutors incorrectly characterized the cancelled meeting and Nayak’s “vague offer” to raise $1.5 million for Blagojevich if he appointed Jackson to the Senate as “soliciting a bribe,” Blagojevich’s lawyers contended.

However, the brief made no mention of the fact that Chase and fellow Tribune reporter Jeff Coen were given exclusive access to 1,800 pages of court-sealed federal wiretap transcripts that Blagojevich was not allowed to use for his defense. Blagojevich’s defense team never called Chase to testify about how he and Coen got access to the tapes, which they quoted extensively in their book, “Golden: How Rod Blagojevich Talked Himself Out of the Governor’s Office and into Prison,” which was published last fall.

While on their book tour, the authors insisted there was “no legal ban” on publishing excerpts from the same tapes that Zagel would not allow Blagojevich to play in court.

Neither reporter responded to an inquiry by CNSNews.com about whether they would make the tapes publicly available.

Read entire CNS article here: Blagojevich Appeal: ‘One-Sided’ Rules Barred Defense From Playing Tapes

Bravo Barbara Hollingsworth and CNS News for getting it right.

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6May/130

Chicago Tribune reporters work for Federal Government

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Thomas Barton, Investigative Reporter

In an interview with veteran reporter Barbara Hollingsworth, Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen revealed that the Feds gave them the tapes and transcripts that the U.S Attorney's office still refuses to share with anyone else.

That begs this question: Why did the Feds give the Trib reporters, and only the Trib reporters, access to this incendiary material?

Here’s our answer: So that Chase and Coen could assure you that there’s "Nothing to hear on these tapes, folks. Move along now."

Consequently, we believe the Trib reporters colluded with the Feds, with the complicity of the Tribune management, in order to dupe you, the public.

We also question why we’ve heard no outrage from Rod Blagojevich or his attorneys. Do you suppose there’s a "back-room deal" to trade Blago's silence for his early-release from prison?

John Chase and Jeff Coen have revealed none of the taped conversations, they say the Feds gave them, that recorded Blago’s conversations with multiple prominent persons in the Washington D.C. halls of power.

To change that, why don’t Chase and Coen start by sharing the Rahm Emanuel-taped conversations with Chicagoans? He is our Mayor, after all.

As this story unfolds, and as the true reasons for Patrick Fitzgerald having been appointed U.S. Attorney Northern District of Illinois become clear, it will also become clear that this level and scope of corruption requires the co-operation of the Chicago media.

The struggle to remain a free people requires an honest "Fourth Estate." And today, Chicago doesn't have one.

Read Hollingsworth's article here:  Source of Leaked Transcripts of Blagojevich Tapes

H/T Chicago Daily Observer:

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22Apr/130

BREAKING NEWS: Blagojevich Attorney calls out Chicago Tribune reporters

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Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief

Kudos to the Chicago Daily Observer for their relentless pursuit of the truth. (Unlike the Tribune Co., which is largely responsible for the prostitution of the dead-tree "Fourth Estate" in Chicago.)

Today, at the Chicago Daily Observer, you’ll find an example of legitimate journalism displayed by Barbara Hollingsworth, as we learn that one of the Blagojevich attorneys has gone on-record stating that Chicago Tribune reporters Jeff Coen and John Chase are lying about having had access to the federal wiretap tapes and transcripts – material that was never made public.

And, furthermore, that the U.S. Attorney's Office was so concerned about the contents of the tapes being leaked, they insisted that the Blagojevich's and their attorneys return all copies of tapes and transcripts back to the government.

Excerpt:

Michael Ettinger, one of the defense attorneys for Blagojevich’s brother, Robert, was even blunter: “If Jeff Coen said he listened to the 500 hours of tapes, he's a liar," Ettinger told me in a recent email. “The government wanted all tapes, copies and transcripts returned before [Robert’s case] was dismissed out.” Ettinger added in a follow-up phone conversation with me that, “Rod’s team had to give them back, too. No one kept them.”

Read more of Hollingsworth's article here: Just How Did those “Sealed” Blagojevich Tapes Get to the Tribune Reporters?

Hats off to Barbara Hollingsworth and the Chicago Daily Observer. An honest Fourth Estate is essential to fight corruption and remain a free people.

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20Oct/120

Weekly Standard reviews Tribune reporters’ book on Blago

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Annabel Kent, Chicago Media Critic  

Washington Examiner local opinion editor, Barbara Hollingsworth, has written a review of the recently released book about former Illinois Governor Rod “Blago” Blagojevich, entitled Golden, written by Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen.

Hollingsworth’s review appears in the Weekly Standard here.  It is entitled “The Blago File, and states that,

“[M]ore serious readers seeking answers to questions raised about former U.S. attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s multiyear, multimillion-dollar investigation will not find them here. Major omissions in Coen and Chase’s otherwise meticulously detailed narrative regarding the Tribune’s own role in tipping off Blagojevich that he was under wiretap surveillance ultimately render their account incomplete.

Hollingsworth exposes several of the book’s “major omissions” in her 1,200-words review, and refers to

“incredulous bloggers” at Illinoispaytoplay.com who have been openly skeptical about the Tribune reporters’ account of the Blago Fitzgerald episode.

Developing…

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