Blagojevich jury duty conflicting with Oprah show

April 26, 2011

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(AP/File)
One potential juror says a taping of the The Oprah Show could conflict with jury duty.

A potential juror in the trial of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich has tickets to a taping of the Oprah show and she's worried she won't be able to go if she's sitting in a federal courtroom hearing the Blagojevich case.  Judge James Zagel said she'll survive missing the show, but her status is still up in the air.  If she is picked for the jury, Zagel hasn't ruled out altering the court schedule to accomodate her.

So far, about two dozen potential jurors have made the cut to be on the jury.  Zagel is looking to seat 12 jurors, plus six alternates, but that means he actually needs 40 qualified jurors because attorneys from both sides get to strike a certain number of people from the jury. 

Many potential jurors have argued that they're not qualified to be in the pool of 40.  They say sitting on the jury would be so hard on them economically that they wouldn't be able to focus, and therefore they wouldn't be fair.  Others say they've already made up their mind about Blagojevich.