President Obama to speak at commencement at Notre Dame
This is not very Christian-like, but maybe since I am not Catholic, there is a different way of being Christian-like in the Catholic religion?
Cardinal Francis George called the University of Notre Dame's decision to invite President Barack Obama to speak at its commencement an "extreme embarrassment" to Catholics.
"It is clear that Notre Dame didn't understand what it means to be Catholic when they issued this inv itation," said George, who made his remarks at a conference Sunday hosted by the Chicago Archdiocese's Respect Life office in Rosemont.
In a video of George's speech posted Wednesday on lifesitenews.com, George calls Notre Dame "the flagship Catholic university" and said that it has "brought extreme embarrassment to many, many people who are Catholic."
Obama's positions on embryonic stem cell research and abortion have caused a firestorm of protest over his planned May 17 speech at Notre Dame.
Changes at Sox Park
A bigger 68' by 23' scoreboard? Don't people come to watch the game? At least they have an affordable meal plan option for $7, not the healthiest but affordable.
Ultimately, it's a huge television screen that allows you huge flexibility. The old one was automated, but for whatever reason, it got antiquated. We can show four games at a time in a rotation," Reifert said.
There's now a stairway on the east side of the atrium that leads directly to a bridge leading into the main concourse, and offers a stunning view of downtown.
"The view of the skyline is second to none," said Lou Hernandez, team director of public relations.
New enclosed escalators in the atrium will take fans to the upper deck. Elevators soon will be installed for the disabled, Reifert said. The ramps still are there for those who like to walk.
"On the South Side, homemade Italian meatballs are very popular. The meatballs are half pork and half ground beef with onions, garlic, tomato sauce and provolone cheese," Soto said.
Another new addition is the $7 Taste of the Ballpark - a hot dog, bag of popcorn, side of nachos, side of peanuts and a 14-ounce soft drink - available all over the ballpark.
Also new is gluten-free beer, granola bars and candy at the ballpark's Southside Grill.
Former Governor, and now indicted Rod Blagojevich
Key ethics points in the career of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a Democrat who was indicted Thursday on 16 counts of wire fraud, racketeering and extortion conspiracy, attempted extortion and making false statements in a “pay-to-play” scheme to trade government action for personal and political enrichment beginning in 2002:
• Blagojevich, 5 others indicted on corruption charges
Jan. 13: Blagojevich is sworn in.
April 16: Hires inspector general to investigate government corruption.
Dec. 9: Signs ethics legislation.
June 30: In a letter released publicly, U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald says he has witnesses to “very serious allegations of endemic hiring fraud” in the Blagojevich administration.
Oct. 11: Antoin “Tony” Rezko, a top Blagojevich fundraiser, is indicted on federal charges of using his political influence to squeeze kickbacks from companies seeking to do business with the state.
Oct. 27: Stuart Levine, a Republican fundraiser who ingratiated himself with Rezko, pleads guilty to mail fraud and money laundering as part of the Rezko scheme, and agrees to cooperate.
Nov. 7: Blagojevich is re-elected, handily beating Republican challenger Judy Baar Topinka.
April 22: Ali Ata, former director of the Illinois Finance Authority, pleads guilty to lying to the FBI about Rezko’s role in getting him his state job, testifies against Rezko and continues to cooperate in the investigation.
June 4: A federal jury convicts Rezko of fraud, money laundering and bribery.
Oct. 30: William Cellini, a major Illinois power broker, is indicted on charges of conspiring with Rezko to shake down an investment firm for campaign contributions to Blagojevich.
Dec. 9: Federal agents arrest Blagojevich on corruption charges that include an alleged effort to sell or trade President Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder.
Dec. 15: The Illinois House votes 113 to 0 to create a committee to study the allegations against Blagojevich and recommend whether he should be impeached.
Dec. 17: The Illinois Supreme Court rejects state Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s effort to remove Blagojevich from office. She had argued the governor’s legal and political troubles amounted to a disability.
Dec. 19: A defiant Blagojevich holds first press conference since his arrest, proclaims his innocence and says he will not resign.
Dec. 30: Blagojevich names former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris to replace Obama in the Senate.
Jan. 8: A key House panel unanimously recommends impeachment for Blagojevich, setting up a vote of the full House.
Jan. 9: The Illinois House votes 114 to 1 to impeach Blagojevich, the first Illinois governor in history to be impeached.
Jan. 15: Burris sworn in as Obama’s replacement.
Jan. 23: Blagojevich holds a news conference to blast the upcoming Senate impeachment trial as unfair and says he won’t participate. Defense attorney Ed Genson announces he’s leaving the criminal case, suggesting Blagojevich wouldn’t listen to him.
Jan. 26: The Illinois Senate opens the impeachment trial; Blagojevich goes on a media blitz in New York to proclaim his innocence.
Jan. 29: Illinois Senate votes unanimously to remove Blagojevich from office and bar him from holding office in the future; Lt. Gov. Patrick Quinn sworn in as governor.
April 2: Blagojevich is indicted with five co-defendants.
Now we can figure out who are the ABCs of the previous indictments, many of the ABCs are on this one as well
In a sweeping 19-count federal indictment, prosecutors allege Blagojevich discussed with aides the possibility he could get a Cabinet post in the new president's administration, substantial fundraising assistance or a high-paying job in exchange for the Senate seat.
In a sweeping 19-count federal indictment, prosecutors allege former Gov. Rod Blagojevich discussed with aides the possibility he could get a Cabinet post in the new president's administration, substantial fundraising assistance or a high-paying job in exchange for the Senate seat.
Prosecutors also charged Blagojevich, 52, and five members of his inner circle with plotting to line their pockets with millions of dollars in ill-gotten gains, squeezing contractors, hospital owners and others seeking state business for kickbacks they planned to split after the governor left office.
"I'm saddened and hurt but I am not surprised by the indictment," Blagojevich, who was at Walt Disney World with his family, said in a statement. "I am innocent. I now will fight in the courts to clear my name."
The indictment alleges Blagojevich told an aide in 2006 he wanted to stall a $2 million state grant to a school championed by a congressman until the lawmaker's brother held a political fundraiser for the governor.
Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, was the congressman, attorneys familiar with the case said Thursday. The attorneys spoke on condition of anonymity because the congressman isn't named in the indictment and the information is secret grand jury material.
At the time, Emanuel was the congressman from the 5th District on Chicago's North Side. Some of the funds were later released, even though no fundraiser had been held.
Blagojevich also is accused of seeking to withhold state aid from Tribune Co. unless the company fired unfriendly editorial writers at the Chicago Tribune.
In addition, Blagojevich was involved in a corrupt scheme to get a massive kickback in exchange for the refinancing of billions of dollars in state pension funds, according to the indictment.
Convicted fixer Tony Rezko paid Blagojevich's wife, Patti, a $14,396 real estate commission "even though she had done no work" to earn it and later hired her at a salary of $12,000 a month plus another $40,000 fee, the indictment said.
And, according to the indictment, Blagojevich told an aide he didn't want executives with two financial institutions getting further state business after he concluded they were not helping his wife get a high-paying job. She was not charged.
Others charged were brother Robert Blagojevich; former chief of staff Alonzo Monk; onetime chief fundraiser Christopher G. Kelly; Springfield lobbyist-millionaire William F. Cellini; and another former chief of staff, John Harris. Prosecutors said Harris has agreed to cooperate.
Rod Blagojevich was indicted on charges of racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud, extortion conspiracy and attempted extortion, and making false statements. Most of those charges carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Prosecutors said certificates of deposit, letters of credit and assets held by banks in name of or on behalf of Friends of Blagojevich of at least $188,370 are subject to forfeiture. If the money can't be found, Blagojevich might have to forfeit his Washington D.C. apartment and Chicago home.
Blagojevich was arrested Dec. 9 on a criminal complaint and U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald had faced a Tuesday deadline to supplant it with an indictment handed up by a federal grand jury. The Democrat's arrest led to his political downfall: The Illinois House impeached him Jan. 9. The Senate convicted him and removed him from office Jan. 29.
Thursday's indictment said that in 2003 - the former governor's first year in office - Blagojevich, Monk, Kelly and Rezko agreed to direct big-money state business involved in refinancing billions of dollars in pension bonds as part of a deal with a lobbyist who promised a massive kickback in return. The lobbyist wasn't identified.