10/19/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Jones Caves To "My Friend, Barack Obama"

A day after getting a phone call from Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, Senate President Emil Jones decided Thursday to summon senators back to the Capitol next week to tackle a high-profile ethics bill.

"I plan to call the Senate back into session to deal with the issue of ethics only at the request of my friend, Barack Obama," said Jones, whom Obama has called his political godfather.

Jones had been criticized for saying he wouldn't quickly call the Senate back to Springfield to consider Gov. Rod Blagojevich's changes to legislation to ban contributors who have or seek contracts worth at least $50,000 from giving to statewide officials who dole out the business.

The House overrode the governor's veto last week, but the soon-to-retire Jones said he'd wait until after the Nov. 4 election. Proponents argued that could kill the reforms, citing a 15-day clock they argued started ticking after the House vote.

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