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Blago Tainted His Own Jury: Judge

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Blago Tainted His Own Jury: Judge
Jack Higgins
Blago Tainted His Own Jury: Judge

Jan. 23, 2009 | Media Blitz.
In the weeks following his impeachment, Blagojevich did a wall-to-wall media tour, talking to anyone who would have him.

Lawyers for former governor Rod Blagojevich are saying he can't get a fair jury in Chicago.

The judge overseeing the case says that's Blago's fault.

While lawyers argue over a jury pool that has expressed opinions on Blagojevich's guilt, Zagel said it's no wonder jurors have opinions, because of Blagojevich's extensive comments. 

"He asked them to have an opinion," Judge James Zagel said Monday just before declining to throw out a jury pool that took more than a week to assemble. "Much of the dilemma he faces, was created by himself."

Blagojevich's media tour is well documented. The former governor wastes no chance to discuss his case and vehemently profess is innocence. During the run up to the first trial, Blagojevich appeared on Celebrity Apprentice, hosted a talk radio show and gravitated toward any rolling camera. According to jurors questionairres, the appearances didn't establish a sense that he was innocent.

For that reason, and others, lawyers asked that the jury pool be thrown out and that the trial be moved to Hammond, Indiana.

Zagel, however, declined to throw out the jury pool.

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