WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama says the removal of Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY'-uh-vich) as governor has ended a "painful episode for Illinois."
In a 41-word statement released late Thursday, Obama says he wishes Blagojevich's replacement, Gov. Patrick Quinn, the best even though the state was crippled by a crisis of leadership.
Lawmakers in Springfield unanimously ousted Blagojevich from office Thursday afternoon. He is accused of trying to profit from selling Obama's former seat in the U.S. Senate and faces federal investigation.
Blagojevich says he has done no wrong and has vowed to defend himself.