Biden: Internal Review Will Show 'No Inappropriate Contact' With Blagojevich

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An internal review expected to be released later Tuesday will show there was "no inappropriate contact" between Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and President-elect Barack Obama's staff, Vice President-elect Joe Biden told reporters.

Obama ordered the internal review after the Illinois governor was arrested two weeks ago on corruption charges and accused of conspiring to sell off Obama's vacant Senate seat. The president-elect said he was holding on to the report until now at the request of the U.S. attorney's office.

Biden addressed the matter during a meeting with economic advisers Tuesday.

"I don't think there's anything to exonerate," Biden said. He said the report will show "there has been no inappropriate contact between any member of the Obama staff or transition team with Blagojevich."

The president-elect's team hopes the report will end speculation that Obama or any members of his campaign staff or future Cabinet were involved in the governor's alleged "pay-to-play" schemes.

Obama is not accused of any wrongdoing. The FBI complaint against Blagojevich suggests the president-elect would not engage the governor in his alleged attempts to sell the Senate seat. The affidavit shows Blagojevich swearing when speaking of the president-elect and his team's apparent unwillingness to offer him anything of value in exchange for appointing Obama's candidate of choice.

But Obama has been dogged by questions about the charges since Blagojevich's arrest. At issue are contacts between Obama's aides -- including incoming White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel -- and Blagojevich's office.

Emanuel contacted the office of Blagojevich about the Senate appointment, according to a source close to the governor who requested anonymity because the person is not authorized to speak on the matter.

Blagojevich believed Emanuel was advocating Obama friend Valerie Jarrett for the Senate seat so he would not have to compete with her for Obama's attention in the White House, the source said.

Sources have said Emanuel is not a target of prosecutors, however. Emanuel has refused to comment on his recent interaction with Blagojevich and his staff.

Emanuel succeeded Blagojevich in his House seat in 2002, when Blagojevich became governor. Emanuel also served as an informal campaign adviser to the governor and has a mutual friend with Blagojevich who has become a key player in the criminal investigation.

Last week, Obama said it was "a little bit frustrating" to hold on to the report for as long as he has. He said he wanted to "correct immediately" the speculation in the press.

Meanwhile, federal prosecutors have asked the state legislative committee studying Blagojevich's impeachment not to dig into criminal charges against the governor.

In a letter released Tuesday, Fitzgerald says the panel could "significantly compromise" his investigation by interviewing Blagojevich aides about possible crimes.

Fitzgerald is also declining to provide information about his investigation, such as the identities of people mentioned in a criminal complaint.

The committee is supposed to recommend whether the full House consider impeaching the governor. Members had sent a letter to Fitzgerald asking for guidance on whether to look into the criminal allegations.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.