Chicago Sun-Times
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Blagojevich subpoenas Rahm Emanuel and Valerie Jarrett for his defense UPDATED

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By Natasha Korecki and Lynn Sweet

Chicago Sun-Times
Blagojevich trial coverage at www.blogs.suntimes.com/blago


Updated 2:35 p.m.Chicago time with Valerie Jarrett subpoena

President Obama's chief of staff Rahm Emanuel and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett were subpoenaed by the defense to testify in Rod Blagojevich's upcoming trial, a Blagojevich attorney told the Chicago Sun-Times.

"Yes, he's been subpoenaed by the defense," one of Rod Blagojevich's lawyers, Shelly Sorosky told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Sorosky described Emanuel as a "critical" witness because: "he's the supposed victim of an extortion." One of the charges against Blagojevich accuses him of attempting to extort Emanuel while he was a congressman.

The White House this afternoon confirmed Emanuel and Jarrett were subpoenaed. The subpoenas were accepted, the Sun-Times was told by a White House source,


Sorosky said there are two areas of interest involving Emanuel: the alleged attempted extortion of Emanuel by then-Gov. Blagojevich and the U.S. senate seat selection concerning now-White House Senior Adviser Jarrett.

Jarrett was initially interested in the Senate seat post after Obama was elected president in 2008 and Emanuel had some discussions with both Blagojevich and his staff about the open seat.

Blagojevich had the sole power to appoint a replacement to Obama's vacant seat. He's charged with trying to extract a personal benefit from his potential nominees in exchange for an appointment.

The defense in Blagojevich's case has already subpoenaed three Democratic lawmakers: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid from Nevada and Sen. Dick Durbin and Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. from Illinois

Sorosky acknowledged that Emanuel, and many others who have been subject of subpoenas, might not actually be called to testify.

"We served a lot of these people just in case they were needed," Sorosky said.
"We don't know if we're going to call them or not. It depends on what happens at trial."
.

2 Comments

Call every one of these "WORD DANCERS", I'll buy the butter corn for said entertainment!

While I am guessing that most of these people will not be called, the defense is essentially trying to scare everyone and by that blackmailing them to appear.

The DA I am quite surprised did not bother to subpoena Emanuel as he does seem to be the person who was black mailed.

The endless games that are done during trials like this are more or less speculation and really a way to try and muddy the waters. Emanuel and Jesse Jackson (Jr) are probably the main players.

Although I am guessing by the time the trial is done the former governor will have wished he hadn't called the people.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 2, 2010 1:28 PM.

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