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After weeks in the courtroom and 10 days of deliberations, Kim Spaetti, one of the jurors who voted Rod Blagojevich guilty on 17 of 20 counts against him, said Wednesday U.S. District Judge James Zagel "seemed like he was very much for the government."

"It did seem that he was pro-prosecution," said Spaetti, 31, of Winthrop Harbor, who works at a fruit company. Zagel's perceived bias didn't factor into the jury's deliberations, she said. "None of us were legal experts. We didn't know why they [prosecutors] were objecting so much. We tried not to speculate on why."

Much of the questioning by Blagojevich's defense team was objected to by prosecutors and ultimately blocked by Zagel, in attempts to keep out facts the judge had already ruled couldn't be part of the trial.

Blagojevich's antics on the stand included saying "God bless you" every time a juror sneezed. Turns out Spaetti was the sneeziest juror in the box.

"Yes, I was the sneeze juror," she said, sighing. "He blessed me, god, three or four times. I was the butt of the jokes every time we got back in the jury room. What can you do? He's a funny guy."

Spaetti also said the ex-gov's personal testimony was excessive.

"The whole first day, I really thought it was a waste of our time. I don't think we needed the rags-to-riches story," Spaetti said. "I don't think it pertained to the trial."

Blagojevich spent his first day on the stand talking personal history, including a "man-crush" on Alexander Hamilton, his days wearing polyester as a student at Northwestern University and his first date with wife Patti.

Meanwhile, she said some of the defense's decisions left her puzzled or, in the case of Jesse Jackson Jr., saying, "Oh my god" in shock.

"He humiliated him," Spaetti said.

For all of Blagojevich's time on the stand defending himself -- and in spite of what jurors said seemed like testimony directed toward them -- Spaetti said she had little trouble finding Blagojevich guilty.

"It really wasn't difficult for me. I went in there really headstrong," she said.

She said it could be difficult balancing that with opinions of others in the jury room during the nine substantive days of deliberations before the jury finally announced its verdict: Blagojevich was guilty on 17 of 20 counts and not guilty on one. The jury was unable to reach a verdict on two of the counts.

Maribel DeLeon, another juror on the trial, told reporters she was hoping to find Blagjevich not guilty -- but the evidence pointed in a different direction.

"I'd come in thinking, 'OK, he's not guilty,' and then all of a sudden I'm like, 'Gosh darn you, Rod! You did it again!' I mean, he proved beyond a reasonable doubt that he was guilty," said DeLeon, a mother of three.

For Spaetti, that could be frustrating.

"There were a couple jurors who would frequently would look on the defense side," she said, and other jurors had to constantly remind them to look at the evidence. "Yes, we see Patti in the courtroom crying and he brought his daughter in one day, but you're there to do a job and people are counting on you to put that aside."



Any prison term will have an undeniable toll on Rod Blagojevich's children, say defense lawyers, who say their clients often tell them their kids start faltering in school once they go away.

"No matter what happens to him, they're going to be scarred for life," said federal defense attorney Kent Carlson. "When you're used to having a father to do stuff and he's not there, it has an impact."

Blagojevich will likely want to be placed in a prison camp in Oxford, Wisconsin, to make weekend visits easier on his daughters, 8 and 14. Oxford is among the closest to Chicago.

However, experts say that the length of Blagojevich's sentence could be a key factor in deciding whether the former governor is in a place with guards and bars or in a place with khakis and cards.

Defendants who are sentenced to more than 10 years in prison typically don't get a spot in the more-desired prison camps, said defense attorney Jeffrey Steinback, who is regarded as an expert in federal sentencing and who has testified before the U.S. Sentencing Commission. Read more: Click here

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

The jury debating Rod Blagojevich's fate has come to a unanimous decision on 18 of the 20 counts against the former governor. It appears we will have a verdict this afternoon.

They remain deadlocked on 2.

In a note to Judge James Zagel Monday morning, the jury wrote that they were "confident we will not come to an agreement" on the other 2 counts, "even with further deliberations."

The prosecution said Zagel should accept a verdict on the 18 counts and the defense had no objection.

Zagel, who is overseeing another trial in his courtroom, said the verdict will be announced no earlier than 1 p.m.

The jury's communication came on day 10 of their talks and after taking a three-day weekend. They had gone all of last week without saying a word.

The note quickly squashed speculation that yet another jury was hung on the ex-governor's case. Last summer, a panel of six women and six men were deadlocked on 23 of 24 counts, convicting the former governor of just one count.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Onto day 10.

Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich will have to wait until at least next week to hear from the jury debating his fate on 20 counts charging him with corruption, fraud and extortion.

The jury ended its ninth day at its usual 4 p.m. Thursday and will be back to deliberating Monday. Their regular schedule is Monday-Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., according to the clerk of court.

Last year, Blagojevich's jury took 14 days to deliberate before letting Judge James Zagel know they were hopelessly deadlocked. It turned out they were hung on 23 of 24 counts against the ex-gov.

The jury deliberating the fate of Rod Blagojevich was spotted Thursday entering a private elevator on its way to get lunch.

About half of the jurors were looking casual and wearing blue jeans, while others were slightly dressier. They mostly talked in small groups, while a couple individuals stood isolated. One whispered in another's ear.

It's day nine of the jury's deliberations and there's been no signal from them all week on the status of their deliberations. The jury has previously sent two notes to Judge James Zagel.

Last year, the jury on Blagojevich's first trial deliberated for 14 days and came back hung on all but one count.

Jurors in the retrial are weighing 20 counts against the ex-gov, charged with fraud, extortion and corruption.

Rod Blagojevich's jurors were spotted today, looking cheery on a break.

Court security escorted the 11 women and one man downstairs through a private elevator at around noon. They were likely on their way to grab some lunch.

The jurors were dressed as they were during the trial, with some wearing business clothing for the occasion and others looking casual. Some were quiet as they filed past, but most were talking or exchanging jokes, smiling.

Defense lawyer Sheldon Sorosky was also briefly on the 25th floor near Judge James Zagel's courtroom, but he quickly headed back downstairs.

It's the jury's eighth day deliberating 20 charges against the former governor who is accused of corruption, extortion and fraud.

The jury is holed up in Judge James Zagel's chambers for an eighth day as speculation grows about what the 11 women and one man are discussing as they debate Rod Blagojevich's fate.

The relatively quiet jury -- read more about last year's jurors here -- has sent two notes to Zagel thus far. Neither have offered much of a clue into deliberations. The more substantive note asked for clarification on the definition of wire fraud.

Zagel declined to give a definition, telling the jurors to read his instructions again and be more specific if they still had a question. They haven't sent a note since.

They're deliberating 20 counts against the ex-gov.

It's the longest day of the year and the seventh day of jury deliberations in Rod Blagojevich's retrial, and there's been no word from jurors since Thursday.

They sent a note that day asking U.S. District Judge James Zagel to clarify part of the definition for wire fraud.

During last summer's trial, jurors spent 14 days deliberating and came back hung on 23 of the 24 counts facing the ex-governor, convicting him on a relatively lesser charge of making a false statement to the FBI. This time, Blagojevich faces 20 charges, half of which charge him with wire fraud.

Twelve of the 20 charges relate to allegations Blagojevich was hawking Barack Obama's vacated Senate seat to get benefits for himself.

After a break Friday, Saturday and Sunday, jurors are back in the Dirksen Federal Courthouse Monday for their sixth day of deliberations.

The jury sent a note to Judge James Zagel Thursday asking for clarification on the legal definition of wire fraud. Half of the 20 counts Rod Blagojevich faces are wire fraud charges, most relating to the Senate seat allegations.

Specifically the jury wanted clarification on one of the four elements necessary to find Blagojevich guilty of the offense: "that the scheme to defraud involved a materially false and fraudulent pretense, representation, promise, or concealment."

Zagel sent a note back to the jury asking them to read over the instructions again and, if they were still confused, to be more clear about their question in a second note. Thursday ended without another note from the jury.

The jury is made up of 11 women and one man; read more about who's in the room here. For more on what the unusually large gender gap might mean for Blagojevich, click here.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Jurors have sent a note asking for clarification on a jury instruction involving 10 of the 20 counts against former governor Rod Blagojevich.

They specifically asked about the third part of the instruction which says: "Third, that the scheme to defraud involved a materially false and fraudulent pretense, representation, promise, or concealment."

That's interesting, because to find Blagojevich guilty of wire fraud, jurors must find that the government has proven, beyond a reasonable doubt, all four elements of wire fraud -- including the third proposition that they are asking about.

(Click here to read the proposed jury instructions.)

Blagojevich is charged with 10 counts of wire fraud, nearly all having to do with the Senate seat. The jury instruction in question is about one-third of the way through the 70 or so pages they received.

The jurors will get a note back asking them to further clarify what specifically in that sentence they want detailed.

The note from Judge James Zagel tells the panel of 11 women and one man to review all of the instructions again. Then he said, if still necessary, jurors should specify which part of that phrase they want clarified. He told the lawyers in the parties to stay nearby -- and encouraged them to visit a library -- so if and when jurors want further clarification, it can be offered.

This is the instruction that jurors are reviewing:

Counts 1 through 10 of the indictment charge the defendant with wire fraud.
To sustain the charge of wire fraud, as charged in Counts 1 through 10, the government must prove the following propositions beyond a reasonable doubt: First, that the defendant knowingly devised or participated in a scheme to defraud the public of its right to the honest services of Rod Blagojevich or John Harris by demanding, soliciting, seeking, asking for, or agreeing to accept, a bribe in the manner described in the particular Count you are considering;

Second, that the defendant did so with the intent to defraud;

Third, that the scheme to defraud involved a materially false and fraudulent pretense, representation, promise, or concealment; and

Fourth, that for the purpose of carrying out the scheme or attempting to do so, the defendant used or caused the use of interstate wire communications to take place in the manner charged in the particular Count you are considering.

If you find from your consideration of all the evidence that each of these propositions has been proved beyond a reasonable doubt, you should find the defendant guilty of the particular count you are considering. If, on the other hand, you find from your consideration of all the evidence that any of these propositions has not been proved beyond a reasonable doubt, you should find the defendant not guilty of the particular count you are considering.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Lawyers and prosecutors in Rod Blagojevich's retrial were summoned to court on the fifth day of jury deliberations for an unknown reason. They've just emerged from Judge James Zagel's chambers and court has begun.

All attorneys stepped out from Zagel's chambers smiling. Both sides are now huddling and looking over papers.

No word yet on why the lawyers were summoned to court or what they were discussing.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

On the fifth day of jury deliberations, lawyers and prosecutors in Rod Blagojevich's retrial were summoned to court for an unknown reason.

They're currently in Judge James Zagel's chambers.

It's possible the jury is asking to deliberate Friday after all -- despite originally scheduling to meet for deliberations from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

The jury has sent one note to Zagel so far regarding a transcript discrepancy.

More to come.

The jurors in Rod Blagojevich's retrial began their third day of deliberations Tuesday, discussing 20 counts against the former governor who is accused of extortion, fraud and corruption.

The jurors were seated in the order they were picked sequentially, with two exceptions -- one juror who would have been among the 12 was sent home a couple of weeks ago, that brought juror 179, the library science major, into the mix. Then last week, we learned that juror 132, the one who said she was a fan of "Judge Judy," was moved out of order into an alternate position. That brought juror 181 into the mix.

So now, these are the jurors believed to be in the room:

103 A female bartender, Juror 103 has also worked at a database management company and said she's a "weekend warrior" when it comes to a sideline photography gig. She said she remembers last trial's verdict, but not much else: the televisions at work are normally tuned to sports channels.

120 This juror is a young woman who administers pensions, she said. In her spare time, she likes to hang out with her kids.

124 This woman used to work for a food service. A widow, she said she likes to listen to classical music. Her father served in the Navy.

131 This woman moved from California to Chicago because "you follow your love sometimes," she told the judge. A dietician, she works for a food company with a focus on bananas, and said she recalled parts of last year's trial.

136 This female juror, an African American, used to serve in the Navy and said she didn't pay attention to last summer's trial. Her child once visited a doctor at Children's Memorial Hospital. A part-time caterer, she's hoping to go into nursing, she told the judge.

140 A third and fourth grade teacher who said she loves her job, this juror usually just reads headlines in the Daily Herald. She's acted as a learning coach to other teachers, but wasn't a supervisor.

142 This juror does sterilization and lab work for a dental office in her brother's practice, a job she's been doing for the last nine years after raising her children. She's served on a jury multiple times in the county where she lives.

146 This middle-aged woman has been practicing music since she was in junior high, and worked as a choral director until her recent retirement. She said she believes most politicians are good and said "since public officials are human, some may consider their own interests, and you'd hope that they would place their duties of office first."

149 This 40-something mother of three was recently laid off from her job as director of marketing and sales for a manufacturing company, a field she's worked in for most of her life. She didn't care, one way or the other, about the last trial, and told Judge James Zagel she could be a fair juror.

174 This father of two with a slight Boston accent said from what he read, "I figured he was possibly guilty, but that was just a guess." It's an opinion he said he could put aside, though that didn't stop the defense from trying to kick him off for cause. He works in a distribution company and reads the Chicago Tribune on Sundays.

179 This librarian has a master's degree in library science and does social networking for the small- or medium-sized library where she works. She likes to swim and knit, and said she read up on Blagojevich after she got the summons because she was curious.

181 This older female said she didn't form an opinion on Blagojevich because she didn't care much about the news. She's been retired for almost a year and donates to Goodwill and her church.

And these are the likely alternates. One juror was removed from the jury during the trial for undisclosed reasons, so five alternates remain:

132 This middle-aged woman reads her local paper and helps run a small video store. She said she sometimes watches Judge Judy, and Zagel warned her that the case would likely not be so dramatic. She has no preconceptions about the case.

184 This 30-something male service representative for McDonald's Corp. talks to employees around the country about their benefits and used to work for the Chicago Park District as a lifeguard.

190 This woman's husband did some campaign work for Blagojevich when he was running for congressman, but doesn't talk about it much and said he only met Blagojevich once or twice. She has an accounting degree and works between technology and corporate departments at her company. The couple have two kids ages 9 and 6 and sometimes tune into The Daily Show and The Colbert Report on Comedy Central.

191 This mother of three's youngest is about to graduate high school. The former PTA vice-president is active in her Greek Orthodox church and only reads a little news, though she's skeptical of politicians.

192 This juror said he doesn't believe everything he reads. He makes aerosol cans and used to work in a steel factory. He said he spends much of his time chasing after his three young children.

The jurors deliberating in Rod Blagojevich's retrial have adjourned for the day, according to the clerk of court.

Jurors have said they will deliberate 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Monday concluded the jury's second full day of deliberations.

Blagojevich's jury, of which 11 members are women and one is a man, picked a foreperson and a schedule Friday, according to Judge James Zagel.

The jury is back Monday for deliberations on the 20 pending counts against Rod Blagojevich.

Jurors have said they will deliberate 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Blagojevich's jury, of which 11 members are women and one is a man, picked a foreperson and a schedule Friday, according to Judge James Zagel.

The jury deliberates following a week of closing arguments and a defense motion for mistrial denied by Zagel Friday. The defense claimed they received an unfair trial from a judge who had already made his decision in the case.

"Truth is, you may not like us. You may not like our client. You have formed opinions from the first trial," defense lawyer Lauren Kaeseberg told Zagel Friday. "The truth of the matter is we didn't get a fair trial."

The defense also said Zagel misled them into putting Blagojevich on the stand. The judge countered Blagojevich knew testifying was his best choice. He also said he had not formed opinions on the case or the defendant's guilt, telling the defense team that's the jury's job.

The jury deliberates following a day and a half of closing arguments from the prosecution and defense. Prosecutor Carrie Hamilton painstakingly broke down the charges against Blagojevich and the tapes and testimony prosecutors say support their case. They also urged jurors to listen to every tape before finishing their deliberations.

The plea to listen to the tapes was echoed by defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein in his closing argument, who said listening would prove his client's innocence. Goldstein also tried to tear down government witnesses, many of whom received immunity or plea deals, and chalked up much of Blagojevich's talk to normal -- albeit overly chatty -- politicking from a very talkative governor.

"He didn't get a dime, a nickel, a penny," Goldstein said, screaming and pointing at Blagojevich. "He talked and he talked and that is all he did. ... They want you to believe his talk is a crime. It's not."

The last thing jurors heard from a lawyer before heading back to deliberate? These words from prosecutor Reid Schar: "Your verdict will speak the truth. And the truth is he is guilty."

Watch an excerpt from Blagojevich's post-closing argument news conference here.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Rod Blagojevich's jury has finished its first day of deliberations, according to the clerk of court.

Judge James Zagel said in a Friday afternoon hearing the jury that will decide the fate of Blagojevich has picked its foreperson. In that hearing, Zagel denied the defense's bid for a mistrial.

"It seems you were mistrustful of us. Truth is, you may not like us. You may not like our client. You have formed opinions from the first trial," defense lawyer Lauren Kaeseberg told Zagel. "The truth of the matter is we didn't get a fair trial."

The defense had said Zagel, among other things, misled them into believing that putting their client on the stand would be a good thing. They said that Zagel led them to think that case law would allow Blagojevich to testify about what he thought was legal at the time he was discussing the Senate seat appointment.

Zagel said he told the defense: "He could well save himself by testifying...It was an opinion when I uttered it and it is an opinion that I still have."

But he said the decision to testify was Blagojevich's to make.

"He clearly knew it was his best choice," Zagel said.

He also said he never decided guilt or made findings of fact -- that's up to the jury, he said.
"I'm not interested in doing someone else's work," the judge said.

The jury also set a daily schedule for its deliberations, Zagel said. He would not specify what that schedule was except to say the jury will end earlier than is typical. It looks like that may be 4 p.m.; the jury left at about 3:55 p.m., according to a message from Michael Dobbins, the clerk of court.

Blagojevich himself was in court this afternoon. He just went before Zagel to formally ask to be excused from reading jury notes. That means he won't be required to come in when the jury sends notes to the judge."If it's OK with you, Judge," Blagojevich said.

"Then, Governor, you're excused from coming in," Zagel told him.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

In a hearing this afternoon, Judge James Zagel said the jury that will decide the fate of Rod Blagojevich has picked its foreperson.

The jury also set a daily schedule for its deliberations, Zagel said. He would not specify what that schedule was except to say the jury will end earlier than is typical.

Read more on Blagojevich's jury here.

Zagel will also address a defense motion for mistrial in the hearing, which is still in progress. That motion included a mention by the defense suggesting Zagel misled them into putting Blagojevich on the stand.

The defense contends Zagel told them Blagojevich could talk about his understanding of the law or what was legal, but then Zagel wouldn't allow it.

Jurors in Rod Blagojevich's retrial finally have the case after receiving hard copies of their instructions on the law this morning.

There are 11 women and just one man on the jury.

In court on Friday, Judge James Zagel said he would consider a lengthy mistrial motion that the defense filed. In it, lawyers complained the judge created an unfair atmosphere in the courtroom. Lawyers argued he repeatedly issued "tilted rulings" in favor of the prosecution on an issue, then ruling against the defense on a similar issue.
"There appears to be a double standard with regard to the leeway given to the government throughout the case versus the defense," they wrote.

For example, the defense notes that when the government started cross-examination of Blagojevich, they asked him: "You are a convicted liar, right?"

"And then continued, over objection, with multiple questions of this sort including an improper question inferring that all politicians are liars," attorneys wrote. "Had the defense even come close to questions of this nature, the Court certainly would have sustained government objections and most likely the Court would have harshly criticized and reprimanded the defense."

Defense lawyers said by contrast: the defense asked former state employee and fund-raiser Rajinder Bedi: "so, you're a thief?"
The judge sustained the prosecution's objection.

"The contrast here is striking," defense lawyers wrote. "Bedi was convicted of theft, and a question regarding whether he was a 'thief' was not permitted. Blagojevich was convicted of making a false statement to an F.B.I. agent and an inflammatory, improper question was permitted. Blagojevich was not convicted of 'lying' and he is not 'a convicted liar.'"

To read the whole motion: click here

Watch Rod Blagojevich and two of his defense attorneys, Aaron Goldstein and Sheldon Sorosky, discuss the end of his trial and the upcoming jury deliberations in this excerpt from a news conference after court Thursday, June 9. The comments followed a day of closing arguments from prosecutors and the defense team.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

It's Rod Blagojevich against 11 witnesses, Assistant U.S. Attorney Reid Schar argued at the tail end of his closing argument in Rod Blagojevich's re-trial.

"This is not some large government frame-up," Schar insists. "Apparently somehow all these people got him back in 2008 to say a bunch of things that are actually incriminating of him."

Schar concludes with a direct address to the jury.

"Right and wrong. That is the power you have. That is the power you have," Schar repeats. "Your verdict will speak the truth. Your verdict will speak the truth. And the truth is he is guilty."

With that, Blagojevich's retrial awaits only the jury deliberations and verdict. Judge James Zagel is now instructing the jury on their responsibilities.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Contorting his arms oddly, prosecutor Reid Schar is telling jurors Rod Blagojevich's explanations on the Senate seat tie him up in knots.

"I keep getting stuck in a pretzel," Schar says, as Blagojevich rests his chin on his hand.

He's addressing Blagojevich's contention that he was using Jesse Jackson Jr. as a fake ploy to scare pols in Washington, D.C. into helping him broker a deal to pass legislation in exchange for appointing Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to the Senate seat.

"Of course you can ask for campaign contributions in the United States," Schar said, referring to defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein's closing argument stating such requests are legal. What you can't do, he adds, if ask for them in exchange for official actions; that's bribery and extortion.

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."

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein's closing arguments dismissed the prosecution's headline allegation: that Rod Blagojevich tried to sell Barack Obama's vacated Senate seat.

"Please listen to the words. The words mean what they say," he says, urging the jury once again to listen to the tapes and find his client not guilty.

"The whole case is about his intent," Goldstein argues, drawing an objection from the prosecution.

"The whole case?" asks Judge James Zagel skeptically.

"Ninety-five percent?" Goldstein answers.

Goldstein repeats the suggestion that Blagojevich had not, in fact, decided to accept an alleged $1.5 million offer from fundraisers in exchange for making Jesse Jackson Jr. the senator. Blagojevich was just using Jackson as negative leverage to try and get help passing a legislative package in exchange for appointing Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

"Raise Jesse Jackson up, because no one liked Jesse Jackson," Goldstein says. "No one wanted Jesse Jackson to be the senator."

"This is the last call Rod made before he was arrested," Goldstein says, playing a Dec. 8, 2008 call where Blagojevich discusses his plan to make Madigan senator.

"What happens next?" Goldstein says, as the words appear on screen in all caps and big letters.

The question goes unanswered, but the implication is clear: Blagojevich was arrested the morning of Dec. 9.

"You see right there," Goldstein says, turning and pointing across the room at Blagojevich, drawing the jury's attention. "That's an innocent man. Right there, that's an innocent man."

As Goldstein gestures to Blagojevich, Patti begins crying, and Rod Blagojevich is tearing up, too. Patti and her sister embrace as the jury stands to leave. A rebuttal from prosecutor Reid Schar will start after a short break.

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Perhaps they're hoping for another holdout.

As he discusses allegations his client held up a bill to extort a racetrack executive, defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein makes a request of the jurors who will decide Rod Blagojevich's fate.

"Please do me a favor. If you think that man is not guilty, please don't sign a guilty form," Goldstein says. "Please. Too much is at stake here. Don't do it. Don't do it. The words mean what exactly they're saying."

During Blagojevich's last trial, just one juror thought Blagojevich wasn't guilty on the prosecution's Senate seat charges, earning the nickname "the holdout juror" for refusing to side with the others on 11 of the prosecution's 24 total charges. Blagojevich was convicted of just one: lying to the FBI.

Moving onto allegations Blagojevich shook down a hospital CEO, Goldstein has the same message: it never happened.

"He cares about healthcare. There's no doubt," Goldstein tells the jury. "You don't do things that hurt what you love and you care about."

Yes, Goldstein concedes, Robert Blagojevich talked to Patrick Magoon, Children's Memorial Hospital CEO, about fundraising. That, Goldstein tells the jury, is not a crime.

"You're not here to decide whether fundraising is good or bad," Goldstein says. "You're here to decide whether that man committed crimes. And he didn't. He asked for fundraising, which he has every right to do."

Reporting with Natasha Korecki

Defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein is countering the prosecution's Racetrack Bill allegations, contending Rod Blagojevich didn't have to sign the bill right away.

"That governor can sign it, can veto it, can do nothing," Goldstein says. "He is not mandated to sign a bill on any timeline whatsoever."

Goldstein's also taking more time to tear down the prosecution's witnesses. Referring to Lon Monk as "good old Mr. Monk," Goldstein brings up again that Monk betrayed Blagojevich by taking cash from Tony Rezko.

Goldstein is referring to a Dec. 3, 2008 conversation between Blagojevich and Monk overheard on an FBI bug in Blagojevich's campaign office.

BLAGOJEVICH: You could say he could sign the bill right after the first of the year. I think you just say that. He's gonna sign all his bills, he's signing all, he's doing all his bills right...
MONK: No. Look, I wanna go to him without crossing the line and say, give us the f---in' money.
BLAGOJEVICH: Right.
MONK: (UI), give us the money and one has nothing to do with the other...
BLAGOJEVICH: Right.
MONK: ...but give us the f---in' money.Because they're losin', they're losing $9,000 a day.

"According to Monk, 'without crossing the line' means crossing the line," Goldstein argues. "According to Lon Monk, 'one has nothing to do with the other' means 'one has everything to do with the other.' ... Look at the words. You're gonna trust Lon Monk, the gift man, walking through that door, saying 'one has nothing to do with the other' means 'one has everything to do with the other?'

"Sometimes, sometimes in the real world, the words you say actually mean what you say," Goldstein said.

He's calling John Wyma "the immunity man."

"That man? That's who we're gonna believe? Come on. Come on," Goldstein says.

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