RNC Chairman Candidates Jostle Over Blago

Dec 10, 2008 5:53pm

ABC News’ Rick Klein Reports: One way to measure the delight Republicans are taking over the scandal involving Gov. Rod Blagojevich, D-Ill., is visible in the campaign for chairman of the Republican National Committee, where the candidates are weighing in with friendly suggestions for the president-elect.

RNC Chairman Mike Duncan, who is running for another term as chairman, released a strongly worded statement Wednesday:

“President-elect Barack Obama’s carefully parsed and vague statements regarding his own contact and that of his team with Governor Rod Blagojevich are unacceptable.  Considering the severity of the allegations against Governor Blagojevich, the President-elect should immediately disclose any and all communications his transition team has had with the governor’s office along with any Service Employees International Union (SEIU) officials involved in the matter. Obama’s promise of transparency to the American people is now being tested.”

South Carolina GOP Chairman Katon Dawson, who is seeking the national chairmanship, had this to say Tuesday: “President-elect Obama’s presidential transition team has said the American people should have a ‘seat at the table’ and pledged to expand transparency in decision-making. If President-elect Obama is serious, he should immediately release all records of discussions about the appointment of Obama’s successor that he and his transition team may have had with Governor Blagojevich or Governor Blagojevich’s office.”

And this Wednesday from Ken Blackwell, the former Ohio secretary of state who is also bidding to head up the GOP:

“The developing criminal investigation of your friends and allies in Illinois demands you take action,” Blackwell writes in an “open letter” to the president-elect.

“You were quick to call for stringent law enforcement and full disclosure when Republicans had their scandals. Now some of your closest Democratic friends and allies are embroiled in a criminal conspiracy involving multiple felonies, and you must hold them to the same standard. And you can start by telling us what you know about this situation, and when you knew it.”

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