In the wake of Gov. Rod Blagojevich's indictment on corruption charges, Democratic sources are saying that incoming White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel will be absolved of any rumors of wrongdoing when the results of the transition team's internal probe are released, most likely today or tomorrow.
Blagojevich was arrested earlier this month after the FBI taped conversations in which he allegedly discussed selling Obama's vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder, among other charges.
U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald said that the investigation showed no evidence that would link Obama to the allegations. Sources have said that Emanuel isn't being targeted by prosecutors, either.
Still, because Emanuel was thought to have been in contact with Blagojevich's office regarding the Senate appointment, rumors began to fly. Emanuel also had a closer relationship to the governor than others in Obama's inner circle and succeeded him to his House seat in 2002.
And sources say that Emanuel did contact Blagojevich's office to speak about the Senate appointment. They also say that Emanuel seemed to be pushing for Obama's friend, Valerie Jarrett, for the seat.
However, ABC's George Stephanopolous reported this weekend that Emanuel spoke with Blagojevich by phone only once, and most conversations dealt with Emanuel's congressional seat. Stephanopolous also said that, according to sources, Blagojevich's chief of staff John Harris asked Emanuel in one of their four conversations, "All we get is appreciation, right?"
"Right," Emanuel responded.
Obama is expected to release his team's report with those findings by Tuesday. He has held off on releasing the report, he said, because the U.S. attorney's office wanted him to wait while their prosecutors interviewed witnesses.
Despite planning to release his team's report, Obama has not pledged to release other records, including his staffers' E-mails and notes, that could illuminate further what kind of contacts took place between the two offices. When an Obama spokesperson was asked if the team would release those records voluntarily, she said, "Let's wait and see what we put out after our internal review."
"I don't even know if there's any correspondence to be had, so one step at a time," she added.