Illinois lawyers say Rod Blagojevich should be disbarred

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich won his freedom last week when President Donald Trump commuted his prison sentence, but he may lose his law licence.

At a hearing on Tuesday before a panel of the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, commission attorneys urged the panel to recommend that Blagojevich’s suspended licence be permanently revoked.

Making their case, the attorneys reminded the panel about some of the things that led to Blagojevich’s conviction and 14-year prison sentence, which Trump put a stop to after about eight years. They spoke about the former governor’s attempts to auction off an appointment to President Barack Obama’s vacated U.S. Senate seat and how Blagojevich tried to shake down the CEO of a children’s hospital.

Blagojevich didn’t attend the hearing, but his attorney, Sheldon Sorosky, echoed the argument that Blagojevich has been making since even before his 2011 conviction on corruption charges and since his release from prison: that he didn’t break the law.

The 3-member panel will take up to three months to issue its report to a commission review board. It is likely, given the commission last year filed a complaint seeking Blagojevich be disbarred, that the ultimate recommendation will be to revoke his law license. But the commission said that the ultimate decision to revoke or suspend an attorney’s law license must be made by the state supreme court.