Wow, what a day…
Who is surprised?
WASHINGTON — Jesse L. Jackson Jr., the former Democratic representative from Illinois, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to one felony fraud count in connection with his use of $750,000 in campaign money to pay for living expenses and buy items like stuffed animals, elk heads and fur capes.
As part of a plea agreement, prosecutors recommended that Mr. Jackson receive a sentence of 46 to 57 months in prison. The federal judge overseeing the case, Robert L. Wilkins, is scheduled to sentence Mr. Jackson on June 28.
“For years I lived off my campaign,” Mr. Jackson, 47, said in response to questions from the judge about the plea. “I used money I shouldn’t have used for personal purposes.”
At one point during the hearing, the judge stopped his questioning of Mr. Jackson, who was crying, so that he could be given a tissue.
“Guilty, Your Honor — I misled the American people,” Mr. Jackson said when asked whether he would accept the plea deal. Mr. Jackson’s father, the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, his mother and several brothers and sisters accompanied him to the hearing.
And an illustrious career ended:
Mr. Jackson’s plea was yet another chapter in the downward spiral of his career. Elected to Congress in 1995 at the age of 30 from a district that includes part of the South Side of Chicago, Mr. Jackson was once one of the most prominent young black politicians in the country, working on issues related to health care and education for the poor.
A shame for the black community as a whole to have such an iconic figure cast down.
Not to mention we get to relive the Blagojevich scandal through this Jackson trial:
But as the federal authorities investigated Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich of Illinois over his efforts to sell the Senate seat that President Obama vacated in 2008, they uncovered evidence that one of Mr. Jackson’s friends had offered to make a contribution to Mr. Blagojevich’s campaign in exchange for the seat. Since then, Mr. Jackson, who has said he had no knowledge of the offer, has been dogged by questions about his ethics.
Last summer, Mr. Jackson took a medical leave from Congress and was later treated for bipolar disorder. After winning re-election in November, he resigned, citing his health and the federal investigation into his use of campaign money.
Honestly, this has to be a crushing day for people who have supported him through the decades as a representative of the interests of minorities throughout the country. He has sullied his own name, here, and has robbed the people who had supported him.
What a day.