Scroll for updates…Awaiting verdict…judge has received…
Gird your loins. The judge in the Blago corruption trial says a verdict is coming soon.
Via Chicago Trib:
In their latest note to U.S. District Judge James Zagel, jurors signaled they may be getting close to wrapping up their negotiations. They have asked for two things.
First, they requested a copy of the oath that they took when they were sent to deliberate the case against former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
“Do you and each of you solemnly swear that you will well and truly try and a true deliverance make between the United States and , the defendant at the bar, and a true verdict render according to the evidence, so help you God?”
Second, they asked Zagel how to fill out a verdict form when they can’t agree on a specific count. “Do we leave it blank or report the vote split?” the note asked.
Blago and his brother were directed to stay within 30 minutes of the courtroom.
Reminder of the issues in addition to the Senate seat-trading scam that the jury has been charged with tackling:
– a shady, Tony Rezko-connected state pension bond sale;
– attempted extortion of then-Rep. Rahm Emanuel, whose brother Blago wanted to host a fund-raiser in exchange for a $2 million football field grant sought by a school in Emanuel’s congressional district;
– attempted extortion and bribery of Children’s Memorial Hospital;
– conspiracy to extort and bribe a race-track owner in exchange for horse-racing industry tax subsidies;
– and attempted bribery and extortion of a road construction executive, whom Blago wanted to hold a fund-raiser in exchange for $6 billion in government tollway projects.
Update 4:25pm Eastern Sun-Times reports that lawyers and defendants have been summoned to court.
For you total Blago junkies, here’s the livestream from inside the Dirksen Federal Building.
5:07pm Eastern. NBC Chicago reports Rod Blago has arrived at courthouse and told crowd, “Say a prayer for us.”
Reminder of the 24 counts:
Rod R. Blagojevich, 53
Robert Blagojevich, 54
Rod Blagojevich and Monk
Rod Blagojevich, Harris and
Rod Blagojevich and
Rod Blagojevich and
Here’s the generic jury verdict form.
Mistrial on remaining counts declared. Feds say they will retry. Judge gives August 26 deadline for final decision on retrial.
Loose end: What will House Ethics panel do about Jesse Jackson Jr, now? Good bet: Kick the can.