Blago Wanted to Quit, Says Father-in-Law

Chicago power broker says daughter's hubby hoped to avoid ouster
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2009 8:47 AM CST
In this Jan. 13, 2003 file photo, Patti Blagojevich, left, applauds with Richard Mell, center, during inauguration day ceremonies for her husband, Rod Blagojevich, in Springfield, Ill.    (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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(Newser) – Illinois' newest ex-governor wanted to jump before he was pushed, Rod Blagojevich's estranged father-in-law tells the Chicago Sun-Times. Richard Mell, a powerful Chicago alderman credited with launching Blago's career, says his son-in-law, despite his denials, wanted to avoid being ousted "but he didn't reach out to anybody" in state government.

Mell—who declined to comment on whether he'll be offering financial help to his freshly unemployed kin—says he didn't speak to Blago directly, but was told of his wish to quit by his daughter in a conversation on Thursday, the day of the impeachment. Blago's publicist says Mell's claim is "100% not true. He never, ever considered resigning at any time.”