Gutierrez Has Discussed Senate Appointment With Blagojevich
Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) is under consideration by Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) to replace President-elect Barack Obama in the Senate, an Illinois Democratic operative confirmed on Wednesday.
According to the source, the governor has discussed the prospect with the eight-term Chicago lawmaker, and the two Democrats will talk more in a few days about the possibly of his being named to the job.
Blagojevichs office did not return a message left Wednesday morning to confirm the negotiations.
But in a statement, Gutierrez said his priority isnt being in the House or being in the Senate.
My priority is immigration reform, he said. Wherever I feel I can be most effective is where I want to be.
Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.), who some had considered until recently the frontrunner to replace Obama, has not had a direct conversation with the governor about the seat, his office confirmed.
On Sunday, Obama formally resigned his seat, which Blagojevich will fill. Two weeks ago, the embattled governor formed a panel to help him vet possible Obama replacements.
Were obviously willing and waiting for the opportunity to sit down with the governor when he calls, Jackson spokesman Ken Edmonds said.