* I’ve seen comments here and bloviating elsewhere that what Rod Blagojevich is doing with his national media blitz is an ingenious plan to help himself with his criminal trial by influencing the jury pool. I’m not buying it. The explanation is too simplistic. Besides, George Ryan commuted how many death sentences and his jury did what? Exactly.
Natasha Korecki at the Sun-Times sets those people straight today with an excellent story…
“Given that he doesn’t know all the evidence against him, there’s tremendous risk in what he’s doing,” said Levin, who prosecuted ex-Gov. George Ryan. “Some of the statements . . . might fit nicely into the theories [prosecutors] are laying out.”
Prosecutors are likely recording every word out of the governor’s mouth, Levin said.
“No defense attorney in his right mind would sanction this campaign,” defense lawyer Ron Safer said. “It’s a horrible, horrible idea.”
Safer said Blagojevich’s words on television will come across differently in the sterile environment of federal court — especially when jurors will also hear secret profanity-laced FBI recordings of the governor.
“No matter how innocent you think the statements are. No matter how good it feels,” Safer said, “it’s a bad idea, and apparently intolerable to one of the finest criminal lawyers I know.”
Powerhouse defense lawyer Ed Genson quit the case last week, in part over the media campaign.
TV interviews are likely to turn off future jurors, Safer said, adding: “A majority of jurors . . . would be deeply offended by someone who speaks like that over the telephone and then compares himself to Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King.”
Not to mention that the trial is likely years away. Most of this week’s teevee insanity will be forgotten by potential jurors at that point.
Also, he’s probably doing far more harm to himself with his future judge than any good he might be doing with the jury pool.
As I told you earlier this week, Sam Adam, Jr. is running the show now, and it doesn’t appear to me that he has any idea what he’s doing.
* I am wondering whether something like this might be in the offing before he’s removed from office, however…
Afraid their appeals will fall on deaf ears if Gov. Rod Blagojevich is ousted, several relatives of victims tortured by former Chicago police Commander Jon Burge paid a visit to the governor’s office to ask for pardons.
The impeached governor was not at his office today. Instead he was making national media rounds in New York. Blagojevich was scheduled to appear before the state Senate in his impeachment trial that began today.
Jo Ann Patterson made the trip to the embattled Blagojevich’s office to deliver a letter requesting that he pardon the many victims who were allegedly tortured into confessions by way of beatings and electric shocks by Burge and detectives under his command.
She fears if Blagojevich is convicted by the Senate, the requested pardons won’t have a chance.
Any other predictions about what the governor could do before he’s removed?
* Lynn Sweet: Blagojevich likely gains sympathy
* Did show appearances hurt governor?