Blagojevich Tells Ministers He’s Innocent & Will be Vindicated

December 19, 2008 at 5:10 am Leave a comment

rod-blag4.jpgGov. Rod Blagojevich needs time to put together a legal team and political consultation to defend himself against federal corruption charges but feels he’s “not getting space or a chance to sort anything out,” according to one of several pastors who prayed with the embattled governor at his North Side home Friday morning.

Blagojevich met with the ministers before heading to his downtown office, telling them he is innocent and will be vindicated, said the Rev. Ira Acree of the Greater St. John Bible Church, who initiated the meeting. He said Blagojevich would not discuss details of the allegations against him, including that he tried to sell President-elect Barack Obama’s vacant senate seat.
“He did say… at the end of the day the truth will come out, you are only hearing excerpts of everything, (and) when you hear each chapter completely written, it will come out and he will be vindicated,” Acree said.
Blagojevich was in a “great, great mood” but expressed frustration about the media firestorm his arrest has generated, said Acree, who had to pass a throng of reporters camped outside the governor’s home.
“He just mentioned that he would just hope to get some space right now so he could put together a legal team and get some more political consultation,” Acree said. “But he’s not getting space or a chance to sort anything out. He can’t make a step.”
Acree said the pastors did not make any suggestions about Blagojevich’s political future or chastise him, saying they wanted to go there simply to pray with him.
“The last thing they need is a pastor going in and pointing a finger of scorn to him,” he said.
Patti Blagojevich also appeared “jovial,” Acree said, but he would not comment on the demeanor of Blagojevich’s two daughters. He did suggest the arrest is wearing on the children.
“A 12-year-old knows exactly what is going on,” Acree said. And Blagojevich’s other daughter, who is 5, may not be old enough to know what is happening but is old enough to see if there is something wrong with their parents.
Acree said he’d telephoned the governor Thursday and Blagojevich, as he routinely did in the past, returned his call. The two prayed on the phone, Acree suggested he and other ministers come by the governor’s house and one of the governor’s staffers arranged Friday’s meeting, Acree said.
Acree was joined by two other pastors — the Rev. Steve Jones, president of the Baptist Pastor’s Conference, and the Rev. Marshall Hatch of the New Mt. Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church — arrived at the governor’s home shortly after 8 a.m. and met with him for about 20 minutes.
“I look at it like this: Everybody that’s hurting needs hope and the family needs hope and that’s what our jobs are as pastors,” Jones said. “Nobody should be left hopeless. Nobody, no matter what the circumstances.”
Shortly after they left, a fourth minister, the Rev. Leonard Barr of Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, arrived at the governor’s house with his wife, Rita.
He said they were invited by the governor, and the two “prayed that he would continue to be a great governor for the state of Illinois.”
The governor has showed no sign of stepping down since his arrest Tuesday on federal corruption charges despite intensifying calls for his resignation. 
Source: AP

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