Prosecutors crushing Blagojevich in retrial

May 11, 2011

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(WBEZ/Robert Wildeboer)
Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich leaves court Tuesday.

Prosecutors are landing some crushing blows in quick succession in their retrial of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

At 3:35 p.m. Tuesday, David Keahl took the stand.  He oversees ethics training for state employees.  Keahl said every year Blagojevich took the training which makes clear that it’s illegal to even try to trade state action for personal benefits.  That goes to one of Blagojevich's defenses that he didn't know he was committing any crimes because he was relying on his advisors, many of whom have law degrees, to keep him from doing anything illegal.

At 3:58, prosecutors played a tape of Blagojevich talking to advisors on a conference call.  Blagojevich is cursing President-elect Obama because he won’t give Blagojevich anything to appoint his preferred candidate to the Senate.  "You guys are telling me I gotta just suck it up for two years and do nothing, give this motherf***** his Senator.  F*** him.  For nothing?  F*** him!" said Blagojevich.

Blagojevich says the whole world is passing him by and he's, "stuck in this f***ing job as governor now."  He goes on to complain that he needs to make money.  "Amy’s going to college in six years and we can’t afford it.  I can’t afford college for my daughter," says Blagojevich.

At 4:07, before jurors could feel too sorry for the embattled former governor, prosecutors brought an IRS agent to the stand.  She said the Blagojeviches brought in $300,000 a year but were in debt because they spent $400,000 on clothes during his time in office.