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The jury selection for Rod Blagojevich's retrial continued this week. Jurors were excused for a variety of reasons including one juror who had tickets to the Oprah Winfrey Show. Keep up with all the Blago Trial news at Ward Room.
Rod Blagojevich took the stand in his corruption trial Thursday morning and the former governor of Illinois did his best to charm the pants off the jury.
It could be his only hope to stave off conviction and jail time.
"I'm Rod Blagojevich. I used to be your governor, and I'm here to tell the truth," he began.
Then Blagojevich entered into more than four hours of testimony, that, in true Blago fashion, was all about him.
He talked about his crush on Alexander Hamilton, he talked about his love for basketball, Elvis and his wife, Patti (which elicited tears from both Blago and Patti.)
He talked about Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, and Serbia, and his father, and law school.
Blagojevich said he doesn't remember Jackson asking him to name Sandi for a job, but he does remember Jesse Jackson Sr. recommending the woman who did get named. From there he moved on to denying everything with which he was charged.
The accused governor said he never tried to shakedown Rahm Emanuel or his brother Ari
Emanuel. He said he he did ask John Wyma to ask Ari Emanuel for a fundraiser, but that he asked outside of Ari's house in Brentwood, Calif. at a fundraiser being held for Rahm Emanuel, not in exchange for a approving a north side school.
"It was a thrill to meet Larry David. Not like meeting Elvis Presley, but pretty good," Blagojevich says of Ari Emanuel's party. The judge stops him for talking about all celebrities he met at the party. Blagojevich smiles and says, "Knew that was going to happen."