Another Blagojevich aide testifies in Rezko trial

March 11, 2008

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Another former employee of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is scheduled to be on the stand today in the trial of political fundraiser Tony Rezko.

When she worked for the governor, Jennifer Thomas kept track of the resumes that people sent in for state jobs. She told jurors that when resumes came in from Rezko she dropped what she was doing.

The testimony goes to the question that attorney's have been sparring over for the last few days: Just how close were Tony Rezko and the governor?

Prosecutors say Rezko used his influence with the governor to control state boards and get bribes.

But defense attorneys are downplaying Rezko's influence. Yesterday they spent hours showing how lengthy the governor's vetting process for board members is. They pointed out that the process includes recommendations, references, questionnaires, and background checks by private law firms, the governor's lawyers, and the Illinois State Police.
 
The extensive process is at odds with the prosecution's contention that Rezko controlled who was picked.