Several Republican lawmakers called acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and White House counsel Pat Cipollone, the sources told CNN, and the Republican members of Illinois congressional delegation issued a joint statement opposing the move.
At least two of them, Reps. Darin LaHood and Mike Bost, made their case directly to the President on Thursday night, urging him not to go forward. They laid out the litany of crimes Blagojevich committed while in office and argued it would send the wrong message to voters about corruption by public officials.
Trump’s response: “I wish I had the perspective before,” according to Bost, who served on the Illinois House’s impeachment committee to remove Blagojevich from office in 2009.
“Those charges were so outrageously bad,” Bost said.