The blacked-out portions of a subpoena request filed by lawyers for former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich -- which were revealed through a simple computer trick -- suggest President Obama may have played a role in finding his own Senate replacement. See the non-redacted motion here.
On Thursday, Blagojevich's lawyers asked a federal judge to subpoena the president to testify about questions surrounding the government's allegation that Blagojevich was selling or trading Obama's Senate seat after his election to the White House in November 2008.
"President Barack Obama has direct knowledge of the Senate seat allegation," reads Blagojevich's 11-page motion, filed with U.S. District Judge James B. Zagel.
The court erred when it posted the motion in a pdf file with redactions that could be revealed simply by copying and pasting the blacked-out portions to a plain text file.
Blagojevich attorney Sheldon Sorosky brushed off the error, telling Fox News that he didn't know how the redacted file became viewable, and blaming it on a "low tech guy."
Among the blacked-out portions are paragraphs about what the attorneys say was Obama's role in suggesting two candidates for the seat he vacated when he was elected president. The uncovered portion states that even though Obama said in December 2008 that no representative of his had any part in any deals, Blagojevich met with a labor union official who said he was in contact with Obama on Nov. 3, 2008, and had suggested his adviser Valerie Jarrett be appointed to the Senate seat.
That unnamed official told the FBI and the United States attorneys that "Obama expressed his belief that [Senate Candidate B] would be a good senator for the people of Illinois and would be a candidate who could win re-election," the subpoena reads. Jarrett is known to be Senate Candidate B.
The subpoena contends that Senate Candidate B spoke with the labor union official about the Senate seat, and the labor union official told Obama the official "was going to meet with Blagojevich and said he was going to push Blagojevich hard on this."
Blagojevich said that the labor union official was "very explicit" about his conversation with Obama.
Meanwhile, "a supporter of Presidential Candidate Obama" suggested she talked to Blagojevich's wife about Jarrett and "mentioned in a phone call on November 3, 2008, having offered 'fundraising' in exchange for Senate Candidate B for senator."