Jesse Jackson, Jr. In Hot Water Again
By Kate Gardiner in News on Sep 17, 2009 8:20PM
It's the scandal that just won't stop. U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., also known as Candidate 5 in the federal indictment of former governor Rod Blagojevich is still the subject of a federal investigation into his role in the whole Blago saga. Previously, it had been alleged that emissaries for Jackson had promised to raise upwards money for then-governor Blagojevich in exchange for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President Obama upon his election. Besides the current federal investigation, there's also an ethics committee probe with which Jackson has promised full cooperation. The investigation has now turned to whether or not Jackson improperly used his congressional staff to aid him in his pitch to Blago and that's beginning to "overlap" with the ethics probe, leading investigators to ask the ethics probe to hang back so as not to interfere with their investigation.
Federal authorities are probing whether Jackson's congressional staff had authored letters of support for Jackson, then distributed those letters to different interest groups. The groups then are alleged to have put their organization names and signatures on the letters and sent them to Blagojevich.
The ethics office said Wednesday it was investigating whether Jackson used public resources -- in the form of his Chicago and Washington, D.C., staffs -- to vie for the appointment.
"Rep. Jackson may have violated federal law and House rules concerning the proper use of the member's representational allowance," the panel indicated.
In other Jackson family news, Jackson's wife, Ald. Sandi Jackson (7th) presented credentials to the Illinois Democratic party last week to become a candidate for Illinois lieutenant governor.