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Patti Blagojevich Fired By Chicago Christian Industrial League

01/21/09 10:43 PM ET   AP

Patti

CHICAGO — The wife of impeached Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was fired from her $100,000-a-year job as a Chicago homeless agency's chief fundraiser.

The Chicago Christian Industrial League's board exercised a termination clause of Patti Blagojevich's contract on Tuesday, the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times reported on their Web sites Wednesday.

Interim Executive Director Mary Shaver told the papers she could not discuss personnel issues. She did not return telephone messages from The Associated Press on Wednesday.

Patti Blagojevich, 43, was "saddened" by the board's decision, said Lucio Guerrero, a spokesman for Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

"She enjoyed working at the CCIL and thinks the organization does a good job of helping empower those in need. She wishes her colleagues well in these financially trying times," Guerrero said in an e-mail to The Associated Press.

The company hired Patti Blagojevich in August. Earlier this month, officials from the nonprofit organization said its new $25 million shelter has left them desperate to raise money to continue its 100-year-old mission.

The governor was arrested in December in a federal fraud and bribery case and faces an impeachment trial in the state Senate next week.

Patti Blagojevich is not accused of wrongdoing and has not spoken publicly since her husband's arrest. Prosecutors have said she was recorded in a telephone call suggesting newspaper editors should be fired if the Tribune Co. wanted state assistance to sell Wrigley Field.

"Hold up that (expletive) Cubs (expletive)," she says as her husband talks on the telephone, according to the criminal complaint. "(Expletive) them."

Patti Blagojevich is also a licensed real estate broker and appraiser whose Chicago brokerage firm has raised questions about whether she benefited from contacts from her husband and her father, powerful Chicago alderman Richard Mell.

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Filed by Ben Goldberger  |