The 7th Circuit Court Court of Appeals rejected Rod Blagojevich's request for a full-court rehearing on Wednesday, and now the disgraced former Illinois governor plans to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
"We believe the decision is flawed and puts every public official, who must raise campaign funds to stay in office and to be effective, at the mercy of an ambitious or politically-motivated federal prosecutor," Blagojevich's attorney Leonard Goodman said in a statement after the appeals court declined the petition for a full-court rehearing. "But we remain hopeful that we will prevail in the end because the decision is in conflict with established legal precedent which has existed for more than 20 years. Now we will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court."
On July 21, a three-judge appellate panel for the 7th Circuit Court threw out five of the 18 counts Blagojevich was convicted of in 2011. The reversed counts were tied to Blagojevich's effort to swap President Barack Obama's former Senate seat for a Cabinet position in the president's administration back in 2008.
The court upheld the 13 other counts against Blagojevich, noting that the evidence connected to those convictions was "overwhelming."
Those same three appellate judges on Wednesday denied Blagojevich's petition for a full-court rehearing, and the remaining active judges opted against voting on the request.
As a result, Blagojevich's last option is to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.