Ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich will be re-sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Chicago. He's already served four years in prison but some of the original corruption counts against him were thrown out on appeal.
Blagojevich was a creature of television. Even on his worst days, Blagojevich never met a TV camera he didn't like. And so on Tuesday, it seems fitting that he will appear in federal court on a TV screen and not in person after agreeing with a government request to forgo the complicated and lengthy transfer to Chicago. He will be live and direct from prison in Colorado to the courtroom in Chicago.
Blagojevich became a master of grand entrances even when he was on trial, twice-charged with a smorgasbord of public corruption.
In Judge James Zagel's courtroom on Tuesday, there will be a TV signal from the Federal Correctional Institution in Englewood, Colo. It's unlikely Blagojevich will appear in a necktie or with his famous jet black hair. It's more likely he'll be seen live for the first time in prison attire and his actual hair color, which was glimpsed a few years ago in a jailhouse photo.
"I think all of that is sort of a sideshow. What the judge is going to focus on is not whether he's there in person or he's there by video," Gil Soffer, ABC7 legal analyst, said.
ABC7's legal analyst and former federal prosecutor Gil Soffer said the key to whether Blagojevich's 14 year sentence is reduced is Blagojevich himself.
"It's going to be focused on when the governor speaks, how sincere is he? What is he saying? Is he making excuses? Is he misdirecting or is he finally accepting, truly accepting responsibility for what he did?" Soffer said.
Prosecutors will ask Judge James Zagel to simply reissue the original 14 year sentence, arguing that the five counts thrown out by a higher court were insignificant.
"I don't think Judge Zagel if he goes lower is going to go as low as the five years Mr. Blagojevich and his lawyers wants, but he could go down to 10 years which is still four years cut off the sentence," Richard Kling, professor at IIT Kent College of Law, said.
Letters from more than 100 inmates have been submitted to the court affirming Blagojevich's helpfulness in prison.
And on Tuesday, both of Blagojevich's daughters are expected to testify about their dad. One is in college and the other in high school.
Patti Blagojevich said she will have something to say at the end of the re-sentencing.
Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to be re-sentenced Tuesday
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