Chicago Sun-Times
Inside the Rod Blagojevich investigation and related cases

Robert Blagojevich: I thought helping Rod was "the right thing to do"

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Robert Blagojevich testifies that he decided to start a real estate business after watching a late-night infomercial on a college hunting trip with his son.

It makes for a funny moment in the courtroom as Robert admits to getting suckered into paying $300 for a book/CD set about how to begin a business.

"He got me for the $300," Robert says to laughter.

Robert was working as CEO of a Tampa bank at the time, but decided to start buying apartment complexes for a career change. He now runs business out of Nashville, he said.

Rod is watching his brother without expression, his left elbow leaning on the defense table.

The testimony moves on to Robert's participation in his brother's campaign. Robert testifies that he came to Chicago in the summer of 2006 at Rod's request, and was in town through November, on and off, to help with his campaign.

"I thought it would be the right thing to do as his brother to come up and help him," Robert said.

During that time, Robert canvassed neighborhoods, put up signs, did robo-calling and fund-raised for Friends of Blagojevich, he said.

Ettinger asks who was running the campaign at that point; Robert says it was Lon Monk.
Ettinger asks how he had met Monk.

It must have been at Rod's wedding -- "whenever that was," Robert says sharply.

At that, Rod leans back in his chair and smiles, pointing index fingers of both hands toward his brother.

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This page contains a single entry by Sarah Ostman published on July 19, 2010 10:37 AM.

Robert Blagojevich attorney: Robert an upstanding veteran, businessman was the previous entry in this blog.

Robert Blagojevich: I was told never to link fund-raising and government action "and I never did" is the next entry in this blog.

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