Apr 21, 2009

Rod Kicked Off the Island

In a SHOCKING move on our favorite show, U.S. District Court Judge James Zagel has denied permission to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich to travel to the island, calling modifying the terms of Blagojevich's bail on political corruption charges "a bad idea."

Even if Blagojevich had a personal monitor, that person wouldn't have the authority to arrest him, Zagel noted. He also said Blagojevich needs to stick around to read the government's evidence, because only then will he be able to understand the jeopardy he is in.

Zagel added that he was sympathetic to Blagojevich's financial condition, but said there were others ways for him to earn money. [No word from the show's Illinoisapedia if that was an intended zinger about political shakedowns for cash, or if he was discussing selling chairs? Perhaps it was foreshadowing to the secret code "what lies at the feet of the Lincoln Memorial" that has been used in the last couple episodes. It's what keeps us watching!]

When Blajojevich arrived at the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse in downtown Chicago for the hearing, he said participating in the reality show would be "a way to earn a living and support my children. It's not my first choice, but it's a living," he said.

Asked later if his client was really broke, attorney Sheldon Sorosky said: "It shows he is an honest man."

Blagojevich's lawyers had asked permission for their client to travel to Costa Rica in June to be a contestant on NBC's "I'm a Celebrity ... Get me Out of Here!"

In a short-lived 2003 version of the show, contestants, among other things, had to put insects, worms and rats in their pants, sit in a tank of leeches and wade through a swamp populated by snakes and eels.

Blagojevich also is seeking the court's okay to use more than $2 million in his campaign fund to pay for his legal expenses. Zagel encouraged his attorneys to file a motion to that effect but said he believed Blagojevich should be allowed to do so. [Illinoisapedia reminded us, that's the exact same amount left in a briefcase that was found outside a dumpster by Roland Burris's office in episode 3E21... Interesting?]

"I know what the truth is. I'm looking forward to my day in court," Blagojevich said as he left the courthouse, commenting on Zagel's assertion that the former governor didn't realize the jeopardy he is in.

Or does he?

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