Lawmakers say they sought guidance from the impeachment trials of President Bill Clinton in 1999 and Gov. Evan Mecham of Arizona in 1988, and the Senate procedures will be largely modeled on those used in Mr. Clinton’s trial. Chief Justice Thomas R. Fitzgerald of the State Supreme Court will preside, though senators, serving as judges and jurors, can choose to vote down rulings they disagree with. Hearsay is allowed. The standard of proof is essentially up to each senator to decide....
Among those scheduled to appear as witnesses for the prosecution next week are state representatives who were members of the impeachment committee.....
“I found it stunning,” said Ann M. Lousin, a law professor at the John Marshall Law School and an expert on the Illinois Constitution. “What are the legislators from the House going to say they know personally?”
Complicating the impeachment trial is the ongoing investigation of federal prosecutors here. At least one federal agent is expected to testify at the trial, but others connected to the criminal accusations are not. One Senate rule bars witnesses from being subpoenaed if federal prosecutors believe it might compromise their case, a fact Mr. Blagojevich complained bitterly about to reporters on Friday.
Though he has filed no request for witnesses, the governor said he wished to call a long list of people who were not permitted to be called by the rules, including Rahm Emanuel, the president’s chief of staff; Valerie Jarrett, an Obama senior adviser; and governors of other states who would testify, he said, to his upstanding behavior.
January 24, 2009
Blagojevich: "They’re just hanging me. They’re hanging the 12 million people of Illinois who twice have elected a governor."
Are the impeachment proceedings fair?