The day after President Donald Trump commuted former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s prison sentence on corruption charges for attempting to sell Barack Obama’s Senate seat, Blagojevich held a press conference in front of his home to express his “most profound and everlasting gratitude” to the president for giving him “back the freedom that was stolen” from him.
“President Trump is a man who is tough and outspoken but he also has a kind heart and this is an act of kindness and I believe it’s the beginning of a process that—to actually turn an injustice into a justice,” the ex-Democratic governor said while dabbing blood from his chin due to a shaving accident. He would go on to compare his plight to those of non-violent drug offenders of color, adding that Trump “sees wrong and he tries to right it, just like in the case of Alice Johnson."
Blagojevich was found guilty on multiple counts related to selling Obama’s Senate seat and shaking down a children’s hospital executive. He was sentenced to 14 years in prison, which he began serving in 2012. He was initially not eligible for early release until March 2024 before receiving a commutation from Trump.