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Jurors Remain Secret: Zagel

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The former governor hugged and kissed sign-wielding supporters; his wife Patti proudly proclaimed his innocence.

Judge James Zagel reaffirmed today that jurors in Rod Blagojevich's corruption trial would not be named, denying a last minute motion from Blagojevich's attorney. 

Zagel said the media request to make public the names of jurors was untimely because he already promised them anonymity.

Zagel, speaking to a room teaming with reporters, said that revealing the names of jurors could threaten the integrity of the trial by allowing bloggers and columnists to contact them.  

"Anybody can offer their opinion on anything," Zagel said. "That's a valuable aspect of the American system.  We do have areas where not everyone's opinion counts, and trials are one of those areas." 

Zagel said he's already received emails and expects jurors would, too.

"You can communicate secretly with jurors in a case, and this is something that needs to be avoided."
 

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