Letterman on Blago: “Oh, This Guy is Guilty”

Former governor calls removal a "hijacking"

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich told David Letterman he keeps thinking he'll wake up and people will realize "this is just one big misunderstanding."

"I've wanted to be on your show in the worst way for the longest time," Blagojevich said during his appearance on "The Late Show with David Letterman," Tuesday night.

"Well, you're on in the worst way, believe me," David Letterman quipped.

The impeached governor laughed with the audience when Letterman mentioned watching him on several television talk shows.


Letterman joked that the more Blagojevich talked and repeated his claims of innocence, the more the host said to himself, "Oh, this guy is guilty."

The visit with Letterman was one of several since he was booted from office.

The Illinois Senate unanimously convicted Blagojevich on Thursday of abuse of power, making him the first U.S. governor in more than 20 years to be removed by impeachment.

"I view what happened on Thursday as a hijacking by a legislature that removed a governor and prevented that governor from proving his innocence by denying me the right to bring witnesses in," Blagojevich said on NBC's "Today" show.

Neither the prosecution nor the defense was allowed to summon any witnesses whose testimony might interfere with an ongoing federal criminal case. But Blagojevich did not ask to call any witnesses, and did not participate in the trial other than delivering his own closing statement.

"It was an unlawful and improper impeachment. So I don't view myself at all as being shamed or disgraced," he said. "They did a disservice to the people of Illinois."

Blagojevich still faces federal corruption charges including allegations he tried to profit from selling President Barack Obama's vacant U.S. Senate seat.

Blagojevich has repeatedly maintained his innocence. When asked Tuesday if he ever tried to profit from the appointment, he replied: "flat-out, unequivocally no way. No."

The former governor also said he was eager to have his day in court.

"This is America, and I still believe this is a place where, as it's written in the Bible the truth will set you free. I'm clinging to the truth and embracing the truth, I'll ride the truth, and I'll clear my name." 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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