CHICAGO – On the same night jurors acquitted former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich of all but one charge, they won the $64 million Powerball lottery.
What a coincidence! The jurors in the case against Rod Blagojevich had pooled their money together and purchased three tickets for last night’s Illinois Powerball lottery which was worth $64 million dollars. And guess what? They won!! Isn’t that astounding? What a lucky day.
Blagojevich was happy for the jurors, who he smiled and winked at during the entire trial. Blagojevich said, “I think it’s wonderful that the jurors won the lottery. They were all upstanding citizens. They served the state of Illinois, and my family, with honor.”
President Obama’s Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, was also thrilled to hear that the jurors won the Powerball lottery. “Somebody had to win the lottery and it might as well have been the jurors in this case. They had to suffer through a long, boring trial,” Emanuel said.
Some cynics have suggested that the lottery was rigged so that the jurors would win and that perhaps they knew this in advance and decided in favor of the former Governor.
“Impossible,” said Valerie Jarrett, who according to Blagojevich was the person that President Obama wanted to be appointed to the Illinois Senate seat he vacated to become President. “The trial was fair and the jury reached a solid conclusion based on the facts. There is no corruption in Illinois. Never has been.”
The federal jury deadlocked Tuesday on all but one of 24 charges against Blagojevich. He was convicted on a single, less serious count of lying to federal agents.
“This jury shows you that the government threw everything but the kitchen sink at me,” Blagojevich said outside court. “They could not prove I did anything wrong – except for one nebulous charge from five years ago.” The same cynics that thought the trial was rigged also suggested that the jury found him guilty on one charge just to “make it look like it wasn’t rigged.”
“Nonsense,” said David Axelrod, Senior Advisor to President Obama. “He got a fair trial. No it’s over. Let’s move on.”
But one juror said the panel was deadlocked 11-1 in favor of convicting Blagojevich of trying to auction off the Senate seat. Juror Erik Sarnello of Itasca, Ill., said one woman on the jury “just didn’t see what we all saw.” The 21-year-old Sarnello said the counts involving the Senate seat were “the most obvious.” Other jurors tried to persuade the holdout to reconsider, but “at a certain point, there was no changing,” he said.
That’s when the woman told everyone about the Powerball ticket and that she felt “lucky.” Sarnello said, “When she told us that she had a real good feeling about the tickets and that if we didn’t see things her way, she would have a bad feeling about the tickets, well… that’s when we all went along with her. We reached the right verdict.”
Surprisingly, U.S. Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald was also part of the “lottery pool” and will be splitting the winnings with the jurors.
“Justice was served,” President Obama told reporters on Air Force One. “I think we have more important issued to address now.” When asked about charges that the Obama Administration tried to buy off Joe Sestak, Obama said, “Is there a lottery in Pennsylvania?”
The jurors are all headed to Spain for an extended vacation. Michelle Obama recommended a wonderful five-star resort.