Blago Lawyer: My Client’s Stupid, But He’s Not Guilty

Rod Blagojevich’s lead defense attorney took a unique approach in closing arguments yesterday:

Rod Blagojevich’s own lawyer said Tuesday that his client is “foolish” and not the “sharpest knife in the drawer,” but said that is no reason to convict the former Democratic governor of Illinois of corruption.

In his closing argument, attorney Sam Adam Jr. asked the jury to question whether Blagojevich actually committed the crime he is accused of – trying to sell President Barack Obama’s old Senate seat – and asked that they not convict Blagojevich just because of “silly” statements made by the flamboyant ex-governor.

“No one’s going to say he’s the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he’s not corrupt,” Adam said, as was reported by the Chicago Tribune. “Think about who he was trying to extort. The President of the United States? Give me a break!”

“As much as I like him, and as much as he’s loved around the world, this is a man who considered appointing Oprah Winfrey,” he added.


Asked by a reporter outside of the courtroom how he thinks the 12-member jury will rule, Adam predicted: “We’re gonna win 12-0”

Oh I’m sure it will be unanimous, just not in the direction Adam is thinking.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. I heard that on NPR this morning–most amusing.

  2. Reminds me of an old lawyer’s saying.

    When the facts aren’t in your favor, argue the law
    When the law isn’t in your favor, argue the facts.
    When neither are in your favor, just argue.

    To which I guess we can add:

    If your client is Rod Blagojevich, just point at him and get the jury to laugh

  3. Dave Schuler says:

    As I pointed out over at my place it’s the Gyp Watson defense.

  4. Brummagem Joe says:

    It is funny but as a lawyer Doug I’m not sure this is something you should be applauding. This comedian Adam is basically just bringing the legal profession into disrepute much as Cochran did in that other circus trial. Maybe the image of the shyster lawyer is so indelibibly printed on the American psyche (after all Chicago is a musical built around it) that it doesn’t matter but I find Adam’s behavior fairly deplorable.