18 August 2010

Foreman James Matsumoto: Holdout Blagojevich Juror Argued Politics as Usual

Followup to the live-blog of the jury descision.
Foreman James Matsumoto: Holdout Blagojevich Juror Argued Politics as Usual

(Aug. 18) -- Rod Blagojevich appeared to have at least one key juror in his corner, who believed the former Illinois governor was simply engaging in politics as usual rather than anything illegal.

Jury foreman James Matsumoto, appearing on NBC's "Today" show this morning, said some of the votes were 11-1 in favor of conviction, but a female juror sided with Blagojevich, arguing "that he was a politician, he was talking to other politicians, sometimes his fundraisers, sometimes his chief of staff or deputy governors. He was just talking."

"She saw it as no crime was being committed, it was just talk, political talk. That was her position," Matsumoto said. "All of us as jury respected her position, her right to have that opinion."

A juror being interviewed on the Roe Cahn show, WLS-890AM Chicago, reveals that the taco pizza order was a juror who goes by "Steve-O". The holdout juror was a woman. Several of the charges had more than one not guilty vote.

Some pretty bad headlining on this one around the net. Granted, lying to the government is a charge that carries one of the lower penalties, it carries a five year max and the convict will serve 85% of whatever time he is sentenced. The prosecution is already preparing for a new trial. The judge in this case declared a mistrial on 23 counts.

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