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

Blagojevich judge OK's Jackson, Emanuel to testify today

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By Abdon M. Pallasch and Natasha Korecki

Judge James Zagel has ruled that both Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Chicago, and Mayor Rahm Emanuel may testify today, though he warned Blagojevich's attorneys not to elicit inadmissible testimony.

Rod Blagojevich walked into Zagel's courtroom at about 9:45 a.m. He walked over and to a staffer for Jackson, smiled and shook hands.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is also "on-call" and prepared to testify.

Jackson "will testify that he never offered or directed anyone to offer any campaign contributions in exchange for the senate seat," Blagojevich attorney Aaron Goldstein said.

Jackson will testify that the two met, Jackson told Blagojevich why he would make a good senator, the two apologized for having a "bad relationship" with each other, Goldstein said.

"Fund-raising was never brought up, never offered, no offers of 'quid pro quos,' " Goldstein said.

Emanuel will testify he was never made aware of any alleged attempt by Blagojevich to get Emanuel or his brother to hold a fund-raiser in exchange for releasing funds for a high school football field, Blagojevich attorney Sheldon Sorosky said.

Emanuel likewise will testify he was not aware of any request he set up a non-profit group for rich people to fund for a Blagojevich job, Sorosky said.

Emanuel will testify that he held a meeting with Sen. Dick Durbin and David Axelrod about brokering a peace deal between Blagojevich and House Speaker Mike Madigan to pave the way for Blagojevich to appoint Madigan's daughter, Attorney General Lisa Madigan, as senator, Sorosky said.

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on May 25, 2011 10:26 AM.

Jesse Jackson Jr. has arrived -- he's in a witness room was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich: Jackson on the stand, denies any quid pro quo is the next entry in this blog.

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