SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (FOX 32) - An Illinois congressman Wednesday night is revealing how he helped convince President Trump to keep Rod Blagojevich in prison.
Illinois' five Republican congressmen sent a letter to the White House opposing commutation. However, downstate Republican Darin LaHood says he spoke directly with the president.
"Rod Blagojevich is the definition of the swamp," said Rep. LaHood.
Those may not have been his exact words, but Congressman Darin LaHood says he didn't' hold back last week when he pleaded with President Trump not to commute Blagojevich's sentence.
"Listen, I don't think the President understood the extensive nature of the public corruption that Rod Blagojevich had engaged in. And when I laid that out for him, I think he was surprised by those facts. But I think he listened," said Rep. LaHood.
The Peoria Republican told our Mike Flannery that he had extended conversations with the president and Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, reminding them of Illinois' history of corrupt politicians.
"I reminded the president that we've sent four of our last eight governors to federal prison in Illinois," said Rep. Lahood.
Blagojevich's attorney, speaking publicly for the first time since a possible commutation surfaced last week, says it's Representative LaHood who needs to be educated about the case.
"I would love to have a conversation with Representative LaHood and explain to him, I've listened to all three hundred hours of tapes. He never, ever crossed the line!" said Leonard Goodman, Blagojevich's attorney.
Goodman says the recent days have been brutal for Patti Blagojevich and her family.
"She's kept it together for seven and a half years, but to dangle this, and basically to say he's coming home, and then to reverse it has been very hard for her," said Goodman.