Ex-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, accused of scheming to sell or trade President Barack Obama‘s U.S. Senate seat after the November 2008 election, at one point had an A-list candidate in mind for the seat with a pretty good approval rating in the Windy City (or anywhere else in the world): Oprah Winfrey.
Blagojevich was heard touting the talk show queen during backroom discussions in audiotapes recorded just weeks after Obama’s presidential victory, RadarOnline.com has learned.
Blagojevich, on the tapes, called Winfrey a “kingmaker,” according to NBC Chicago — and bragged about the political advantages that could be reaped with the daytime icon in office.
“She’s a kingmaker!” Blagojevich reportedly said on the tapes.
“She made Obama!… Oprah is not far-fetched [as a candidate],” though he does say at one point that “the odds of her f—-ing taking it are slim to none.”
Blagojevich, who makes his intentions of picking an African-American for the job clear on the tapes, bandied about the names of a few other prominent Chicago personalities before dropping the name of one famous leader he wouldn’t give the time of day: Jesse Jackson.
“I don’t want to create an opportunity for him in two years!” Blagojevich said.
Blagojevich, who has appeared on reality shows such as I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! And Celebrity Apprentice in the wake of his scandal, has said the recordings will prove his innocence.