Tag Archives: Greg Craig

Obama lawyered up for interview with federal authorities

It’s Christmas and everybody’s busy and occupied with other things, but some pretty significant events have taken place in the past week.

For one, on last Thursday, the FBI – that’s right, the FBI – interiewed President-elect Obama, and close associates, Valerie Jarrett and Rahm Emanuel and each were represented by private counsel.

And then on Tuesday, December 23, a report by White House counsel Greg Craig was released more or less declaring no problem with respect to Obama, Jarrett, Emanuel, and the other two mentioned in the report, David Axelrod and Dr. Eric Whitaker.

But, as I said, on last Thursday, December 18, the President-elect was interiewed by federal authorities.  And it’s, oh, well, as if he coughed.     NBC New York says:

Obama was not under oath, but he was represented in the FBI interview — as well as throughout the internal review — by Bob Bauer, the shrewdly pugnacious Washington super lawyer who represented Obama’s campaign. Each of the four Obama associates referenced in the internal report also retained attorneys, although only Emanuel and Jarrett sat for interviews with U.S. attorneys and FBI agents.

Valerie Jarrett who was interviewed by federal authorities on Friday, December 19, was represented by Vince J. Connelly, a partner in the Chicago office of Mayer Brown and former prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago.

Rahm Emanuel, interviewed on December 20, hired W. Neil Eggleston to represent him.  Eggleston served as an associate White House counsel under President Bill Clinton. A Washington defense attorney at Debevois & Plimpton, Eggleston represented former White House Political Director Sara Taylor during the federal probe into the 2006 dismissals of federal prosecutors.

It is unclear who represented Axelrod and Whitaker.  The report does not say, and transition sources said they did not know.

According to Politico,  they tried to contact Obama’s lawyer, Bauer, the day the internal review was released but he hung up on the reporter and then forwarded all calls to voice mail.

Some are calling for an independant investigation since the report Craig made was only one side of the story.

I mentioned in a previous post, Obama, Jarrett, and Whitaker are together in Hawaii on an extended Christmas vacation, and Rahm Emanuel is in Africa.

Posted:  12.25.08

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Filed under Barack Obama, crime, politics, President Elect Barack Obama, Rod Blagojevich, Uncategorized

Obama/Blago Report Released (Updated)

The Obama/Blago report of the internal review was released about 4:30 p.m., as promised.  It is in the form of a memo to President-elect Obama, from White House Counsel, Greg Craig, dated December 23, 2008.

The report contains accounts of President-elect Obama, Rahm Emanuel, Valerie Jarrett, David Axelrod, and Dr. Eric Whitaker.  Mr. Craig states that these accounts were communicated to the Office of the United States Attorney in interviews that were conducted last week and that the release of the report was delayed at the request of Mr. Fitzgerald.

The interviews with the federal prosecutors took place over a period of three days:  Thursday, December 18, 2008 (President-elect Obama); December 19. 2008 (Valerie Jarrett); and December 20, 2008 (Rahm Emanuel).

Dr. Eric Whitaker, a family friend, was asked for information by a member of the Governor’s circle and that account has been included in the report, even though Dr. Whitaker is not a member of the transition staff.

The complete report here.

Eric Whitaker is a new name to me.  Some interesting facts are reported by Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times on October 28, 2008, in an article entitled “Obama’s pal Eric Whitaker, his Tony Rezko tie.”

Their friendship began when they were graduate students at Harvard University. Now, Whitaker is one of Obama’s closest advisers.

Whitaker, 43, of Chicago, often travels with the presidential hopeful on the campaign trail and has vacationed with him in Hawaii. There’s talk Whitaker could be in line for a federal appointment if Obama becomes president.

Five years ago, Obama, then an Illinois state senator, gave a “glowing” reference for Whitaker to Tony Rezko, the now-convicted political fixer who helped Gov. Blagojevich find people to run state agencies. Blagojevich hired Whitaker to be the state’s public health director.

For the rest of the story Click Here

Friends of Barack – The Inner Circle

Good synopsis and screen print of the report at The Smoking Gun.

UPDATE:  Just read that Rahm Emanuel is in Africa, perhaps on Safari and, of course, Barack Obama is in Hawaii.  Could they have gotten any further away from the mainland as this shoe drops?   They should both be here to answer any and all questions about this.  I don’t think this delay, dodge, and sidestep is the hope-n-change that was promised.  The President-elect and two of his closest advisers being questioned by federal investigators is big news and it will not go away.  This should be all over the news.  But I shouldn’t be surprised it is being played down, they will cover for them.

UPDATE 2:  Well, darn, how did I miss this.  Whitaker and Jarrett are in Hawaii with Obama.

A Hawaii vacation over Christmas and New Year’s Eve has become a tradition for the Obamas and the families of three of their closest friends, Martin Nesbitt and his wife, Anita Blanchard; Eric Whitaker, and Valerie Jarrett. Obama contemplated a run for the presidency in Oahu over the holidays in 2006, telling reporters at the time that he would reveal his decision after he returned.[More Here]
Posted:  12.23.08  Updated:  12.23.08   Update 2:  12.24.08

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Filed under Barack Obama, crime, Human Interest, politics, President Elect Barack Obama, Rod Blagojevich, Uncategorized