Blago Retrial: Daily Journal 5/16

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2:09 p.m.: Defense lawyers for Rod Blagojevich wanted to point out that the chairman of Children's Memorial Hospital, Patrick Magoon, is personally wealthy.  Blagojevich is accused of shaking Magoon down for a campaign contribution, in exchange for a pediatric rate increase.

The judge adamantly refused, saying, "It doesn't matter if you rob a very rich man. It's still a robbery!"

11 a.m.: The government objected to the defense 44 times in the first hour. After 55 objections, Zagel lectured attorney Sorosk, asking him to "please stop" trying to mislead the jury.

10:07 a.m.: Judge James Zagel says there is nothing in the FBI's reports suggesting that President-elect Barack Obama was aware of alleged shakedown attempts surrounding his seat in the U.S. Senate. Defense lawyers asked for access to the reports to determine if Obama had reported the alleged crimes.  But Zagel, who has read the documents known as 302 reports, says there is nothing there. [Read more here ... ]

What To Expect Today:

John Wyma, Rod Blagojevich's former chief of staff, is expected to be cross-examined today. Judging by the 100-plus objections to defense cross-examinations last week, this might be a bumpy ride.

Previous Journals:

Thursday, May 12, 2011 -- Better Day for Blago?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011 -- Motion for Mistrial Denied

Tuesday, May 10, 2011 -- '[Bleeping] Golden' Tapes Played

Monday, May 9, 2011
-- Harris Cross-Examined

Thursday, May 5, 2011 -- Blago Considered Appointing Himself Senator

Wednesday, May 4, 2011 -- Harris Testimony Continues

Tuesday, May 3, 2011 -- Testimony Begins

Monday, May 2, 2011 -- Opening Statements Due Today

Thursday, April 28, 2011 -- Questioning Continues

Wednesday, April 27, 2011
-- 6 Jurors Left to Question?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011 -- Opening Statements Likely Monday

Monday, April 25, 2011
-- Jury Selection Resumes

Thursday, April 21, 2011 -- Jurors Questioned

Wednesday, April 20, 2011 -- Welcome to the Retrial

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