FoxNews.com | AP
Published July 26, 2010
CHICAGO — A federal prosecutor is detailing Rod Blagojevich’s alleged schemes as part of closing arguments in the former governor’s corruption trial, arguing that the 24 different counts all boil down to something simple: the former governor cannot exchange doing something for the state for something personal.
Prosecutor Chris Niewoehner said Monday that jurors heard Blagojevich try to shake down president-elect Barack Obama for a job in exchange for appointing an Obama friend to his U.S. Senate seat.
He said they heard Blagojevich trying to get a $100,000 campaign contribution in exchange for signing a racetrack bill and trying to shake down a children’s hospital for another contribution.
And, he argued, Blagojevich lied to the FBI about the alleged schemes.
Blagojevich has pleaded not guilty in an alleged scheme to sell Obama’s old Senate seat and plotting to illegally pressure people for campaign contributions.
Earlier in the proceedings Monday, the government asked to drop one count of wire fraud against Blagojevich’s brother, Robert, who has been implicated as helping the former governor.