America’s favorite Big Boy hair model isn’t satisfied with only two shots at being presumed innocent.
Apparently Rod Blagojevich loves the courtroom—so much so that he won’t settle for a mere two trials for his convictions involving wire fraud, extortion and bribery; he wants back in there for another round. This time, however, Blago says that previously unheard FBI wiretapped conversations will put him in a more positive light.
Someone should remind the disgraced Illinois Governor that the first time he was on trial he got off fairly easy, walking away as “One-Count Blagojevich” after jurors deadlocked on 23 counts of fraud and criminal activity–save one charge for lying to the FBI.
His retrial this year, however, didn’t prove to be so lucky as Blago found himself stamped with 17 guilty convictions, adding up to a potential 300-year sentence. These convictions came in light of incriminating FBI wiretapped conversations and a personal testimony that clearly didn’t serve to help the governor in the slightest, though he insisted it would be his redeeming factor.
The Christian Science Monitor reports that Blagojevich insists additional recorded conversations were denied by US District Judge James Zagel from being presented as evidence in court that would provide proper context for his incendiary statements.
Apparently, there’s more context behind Blago referring to President Obama’s vacated Senate seat as “fucking golden,” an asset he “won’t give up for fucking nothing,” that he could “use it [himself] and fucking parachute me [to the Senate].”
Aside from the Tarantino-esque semantics, Blagojevich’s intentions seem pretty clear: he had control over the Senate seat’s appointment, and he was going to use that power for his own political or financial benefit.
Blagojevich maintains that if given the perspective of his past efforts as a civil servant, the Court will see that public interest was at the foundation of many of his allegations, including his desire to be appointed as Secretary of Health and Human Services in exchange for Chicagoan Valerie Jarett taking the Senate seat.
Regardless of intentions, this action in itself is illegal; an unjust Senate appointment centered solely on personal gain. Furthermore, his dedication to “fighting for health care and senior rights as Illinois governor” might be slightly marred by the fact that one of his extortion charges stems from an allegation of asking for a $50,000 donation from Children’s Memorial Hospital in exchange for $8 million in state funding.
Shaking down a children’s hospital doesn’t usually require context to defend—it’s indefensible.
I’m not sure the extent to which Blagojevich has removed himself from reality, but in his eyes offering bribes and committing extortion for the “right reasons” shouldn’t be illegal. You know, just like Al Capone graced Chicago with charitable donations from his gambling and bootlegging funds, Blagojevich can’t be convicted for doing the wrong things for the right reasons, right?
The cry for context isn’t a fresh claim from the Blagojevich litigation circus; if he gets his desired third trial, I’d imagine it’ll follow along the lines of one of his Daily Show interviews: Blago calls context foul, Stewart proceeds to play statement in context, everyone has a chuckle because context does absolutely nothing to change statements—cue sound of dropping gavel.
For the sake of entertainment, I truly hope Hot Rod gets a third shot. Anything to give Jon Stewart an excuse to keep saying “Blagojevich.”