Corruption: Governor Blagojevich Scandal

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There is no arguing or denying the fact that the election of Barack Obama in 2008 changed the face of American politics. However, this is not a political science paper and, unlike the Bush/Gore race of 2000, the Obama/McCain election night passed by with relatively little scandal. So why is it worth mentioning in a paper about corruption? Although no actual fault can be attached to the newly-elected President of the United States, Obama’s election set the stage for one of the most public political corruption cases since the Nixon/Watergate Scandal in the 1970s. This case centered on the activities of the then-Governor of Illinois, Rob Blagojevich.
In 2011, Blagojevich was sentenced to fourteen years in prison after being convicted of seventeen felony counts of corruption, related to three main schemes. These schemes are referred to by various Chicago newspapers as the “Senate Seat” scheme, which accounted for nine of his seventeen charges, the “Children’s Hospital Scheme” and the “Raceway Executive” scheme, for each of which he was found guilty on three separate counts (Turner, 2011, p. 1-4).
To provide some background on the man himself, Rod Blagojevich was first elected Governor of Illinois in 2003, after serving quite honorably and with some distinction in the fifth district of the U.S House of Representatives and the thirty-third district in the Illinois House of Representatives (Ballotpedia, 2014, p.2-3). He was considered by many to be a hopeful presidential candidate in a future race for the big leagues. These hopes were obviously dashed when his corrupt activities came to light.
We will begin with an analysis of the most notorious of the three schemes, the Senate Seat scheme. President Obama’s election left an open seat ...

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