No Tweeting in Court, Judge Tells Blagojevich

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Opening statements are underway in Rod Blagojevich's trial in Chicago, but there will be no further tweets from @GovernorRod until at least the end of the day: the judge has ordered him not to tweet in court.

"I do not want anybody in the well of the court using Twitter during trial," said Judge James Zagel, according to The Blago Blog, the superbly named Sun-Times blog following the proceedings.  Zagel also explained to Blagojevich that public statements (tweeted or otherwise) may come back to haunt him if and when he takes the stand.  "Blagojevich nodded," according to the blog, but will almost certainly not shut up, because that would require common sense, as well as an ability to shut up, neither of which he seems to possess.

Not that Blago's Twitter feed is likely to be very interesting, partly because like most of the other things he has been saying lately it is just for public relations purposes.  Not surprisingly, Blagojevich started using Twitter just a week before trial, has sent (so far) only 13 tweets, and is following just five other feeds: his PR firm, his PR manager, the "PR NewsChannel," HootSuite (a client for managing your own Twitter feed), and @pblagojevich, the feed of his wife, Patti Blagojevich.

As their last pretrial tweets demonstrate, the two Blagojeviches have both steeled themselves for what will clearly be the fight of their lives:

@governorrod:  looking forward to opening statements because that will unlock the truth . . . stay tuned.

@pblagojevich: Wondering if I have time to get to macy's to get the lip gloss Amy wants for her graduation night.

Well, I'm sure Patti also wants to unlock the truth, but life must go on.

The most recent update from the Sun-Times is that Blagojevich's lawyer, Sam Adam, Jr., is now off to the races.  "[B]y the end of this case," he told the jury, "I'm telling you, that man there is as honest as the day is long.  And you will know it where?  In your gut!"  I'm feeling something in my gut, that's for sure.  He continued: "This is the federal government [prosecuting his client].  The same people chasing Bin Laden are chasing him!"

It's going to be an interesting summer.

Link: Chicago Sun-Times (full coverage of the trial)