Reporting with Natasha Korecki
In a change from last year, Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Niewoehner is delivering the prosecution's opening statements. Assistant U.S. Attorney Carrie Hamilton delivered the statement in the first trial.
While Blagojevich watches seriously with hands clasped, Niewoehner, dressed in a navy suit and red tie, is standing right in front of the jury box, pacing and pointing.
"The governor of Illinois was shaking people down," Niewoehner said. "He was abusing his power as governor to get something for himself, and every time he tried to shake someone down, he violated the trust of the people of Illinois, and he violated the law."
Niewoehner said he'll spend the next 45 minutes describing what the government will show in court and how it will prove its case.