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

Prosecutor on Blagojevich: 'This isn't a game. There are rules.'

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki

A bitingly sarcastic Reid Schar is rebutting the defense's closing argument while Rod Blagojevich looks on, sitting with both hands clasped under his chin.

"It's not that he talked too much and so it means nothing," Schar insists. "It's that he talked a lot and it means everything."

Schar started by going through all the decisions the prosecution alleges Blagojevich did in fact make, contrary to defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein's point in his closing argument that Blagojevich never did anything and never made a dime.

"He made decisions and he did take action," Schar said, listing exhaustively the decisions he says Blagojevich made, from asking for a Cabinet post in Barack Obama's administration to deciding against signing the Racetrack Bill.

Schar says Blagojevich was "making it up as he goes," noting he brought up certain things on cross-examination he didn't mention on direct examination with his own lawyer.

Dismissing Blagojevich's argument that he was acting on advice from his various advisers, including his legal counsel Bill Quinlan, Schar points out that in 2008, Blagojevich had a criminal defense lawyer he could confer with.

He lampoons Blagojevich's courtroom behavior.

"He's got four lawyers over there and they couldn't stop him from doing what he wants?" Schar asks, referring to Blagojevich's tendency to talk over his lawyers' own objections. "He rolled right over them. ... He wanted you to hear it."

Not to mention overriding Judge James Zagel, Schar says: "He's a trial lawyer. He knows what the rules are. When a lawyer stands and objects, you stop and wait for the judge.

"This isn't a game," Schar adds, throwing his hands in the air and raising his voice. "There are rules."

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This page contains a single entry by Lark Turner published on June 9, 2011 3:58 PM.

Rod and Patti Blagojevich tearful as defense concludes closing argument; prosecution to give rebuttal was the previous entry in this blog.

Prosecutor 'getting stuck in a pretzel' over Blagojevich's explanations on Senate seat is the next entry in this blog.

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