Blago Toyed With Giving Rival's Daughter Senate Seat...

...in exchange for dad's pet-project support
By Amelia Atlas,  Newser User
Posted Jun 2, 2009 7:40 AM CDT
Ill. Attorney General Lisa Madigan. Rod Blagojevich floated a plan to give President Obama's former Senate seat to Madigan, the daughter of his biggest political rival, in exchange for concessions.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Ousted Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich considered nominating his rival's daughter to the US Senate in exchange for concessions on pet projects, the AP reports. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, daughter of the state's powerful House Speaker Michael Madigan, was in contention for the spot, according to aides to Sen. Dick Durbin. In turn, Blagojevich wanted capital spending projects and a health care bill stuck in the legislature to move forward.

The appointment of Madigan would have come as a shock, given the then-governor's tumultuous relationship with her father. Durbin's aides confirmed that the Illinois senator thought she would be a good choice, an "innocuous compromise" likely to withstand a Republican challenge. As of November, Madigan, who many believe will run for governor in 2010, believed she had a "less than zero" shot at the seat. (Read more Rod Blagojevich stories.)