- The Washington Times - Friday, April 3, 2009

CHICAGO (AP) - President Barack Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, was the congressman targeted by an alleged extortion plan described in the indictment against former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY’-uh-vich), according to attorneys familiar with the case.

At the time, Emanuel was the congressman from the 5th District on Chicago’s North Side. The attorneys spoke on condition of anonymity Thursday because the congressman isn’t named in the indictment and the information is secret grand jury material.

The indictment says the congressman asked about a $2 million grant included in the state budget for a school. But Blagojevich allegedly told a state official to tell the lawmaker his brother would have to raise campaign funds or the grant wouldn’t go through.

The White House declined to comment on the indictment.

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