Jesse Jackson Jr, Junior G-Man? Not quite

posted at 10:50 am on December 22, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

Shortly after being outed as the notorious Candidate #5 in the Rod Blagojevich pay-for-play scandal, Jesse Jackson Jr. tried offering an alternative explanation than what the federal complaint suggested.  Jackson told the media that he had been working with the feds to take down Blagojevich, but that turns out to be less than advertised.  The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Jackson tried using the feds to exact a little revenge, but then backed off when he thought he might get Barack Obama’s Senate seat:

There has been a lot reported about U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.’s cooperation with authorities since Jackson’s name surfaced in the investigation of Gov. Blagojevich’s alleged scheme to sell the Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

But some reports seem to have drawn too much from Jackson’s initial statements that he’d been helping federal authorities look into possible wrongdoing by the governor.

Gee, I wonder why that might be?  Why would the media rush to exonerate Jackson?  Why would people be satisfied with a potential suspect’s assurances that he was innocent without waiting for additional evidence?

Let’s find out just what assistance Jackson was willing to offer, and more importantly, when (emphasis mine):

Late summer 2008: Federal authorities and Jackson have their first telephone conversation about his 2006 meeting with Rezko, a source close to Jackson said last week. During that conversation, Jackson volunteers that his wife, Sandi — who became a Chicago alderman in 2007 — was being considered for a job as Illinois Lottery director in 2002 after Blagojevich had won his first term as governor.

Rep. Jackson also tells the feds that Blagojevich later indicated to him that Sandi Jackson did not get the job because Rep. Jackson did not contribute $25,000 to Blagojevich’s campaign fund.

“During this conversation, the U.S. attorney said, ‘Yes, we would like to sit down with you … about these two things: the Sandi incident and about the meeting with Rezko,'” the Jackson source said.

“And the congressman said ‘Fine, we’ll get together with you guys, no problem.’ However, at the time — this was late summer or so — there was already those thinking that Barack was going to be elected president and that the governor was going to appoint the next U.S. senator.” Jackson then told the feds he was interested in the Senate seat.

“The U.S. attorney said, ‘Fine, what we’ll do is we’ll put it on hold right now. We will get back with you after the presidential election.”

So yes, Jackson did start cooperating with the feds on Blagojevich, but much later than he insinuated in his public statements.  He didn’t call the feds out of a sense of civic duty, either — he dropped a dime on Blagojevich to get even for not giving his wife a patronage job.  That sense of duty magically disappeared when Jackson sensed he could get something better from Blagojevich, at which point he started playing “Don’t call me, I’ll call you” with the feds.  They tried reconnecting with Jackson after November 5th, but he gave them the brush-off again.

A source close to Jackson assures the Sun-Times that the feds told Jackson that he’s not a target of their investigation.  Since the rest of the media seems willing to swallow whatever Jackson tells them, I’m certain this will get headline play in national outlets.  Even if he didn’t commit any crimes in the Blagojevich pay-for-play scandal, though, Jackson hardly covered himself in glory.  His cooperation was solely motivated by political payback, and the hint of personal gain stopped his cooperation dead in its tracks.


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Comments

Has the governing class ever contained more lowlife than it does now? I’m not joking.

Akzed on December 22, 2008 at 10:53 AM

JJ Jr gives me the creeps. Maybe it’s just me. His manner is so fake.

Paul-Cincy on December 22, 2008 at 10:56 AM

A source close to Jackson assures the Sun-Times that the feds told Jackson that he’s not a target of their investigation.

Heh. We’ll see how long that lasts.

“But they told me I wasn’t a target … Waaaa!”

The Jackson family is congenitally dirty. They can’t help themselves.

progressoverpeace on December 22, 2008 at 10:56 AM

Jesse did this only because his wife didn’t get the job! He is a stool pigeon. He is not Mr. Clean! We have to many scum bags that are in office. We need to take a giant vacuum and suck them all in the bag!

sheebe on December 22, 2008 at 10:59 AM

Somewhere in the middle of all this political filth; Obama will be found wallowing. They are all connected in this.

Guardian on December 22, 2008 at 11:01 AM

hmm….I wonder if he will fight..he will fight..he will fight..to clear his good name.

becki51758 on December 22, 2008 at 11:03 AM

The longer Blago stays in office, the longer J-Cubed keeps denying, and the longer Rhambo keeps hiding, the longer PE-BHO’s press confrences will be shorter.

So, what’s the problem?

Yoop on December 22, 2008 at 11:06 AM

Mentioning anything about Jessie Jackson Jr. is raaaaaaacist.

/MSM spin.

BKennedy on December 22, 2008 at 11:08 AM

hmm….I wonder if he will fight..he will fight..he will fight..to clear his good name.

becki51758 on December 22, 2008 at 11:03 AM

I want to hear a poem!

Disturb the Universe on December 22, 2008 at 11:14 AM

WOW I am shocked, just shocked I tell ya. JJJ is a crook like the rest of them. What I want to know is why JJ lawyered up right after the arrest?

HawaiiLwyr on December 22, 2008 at 11:15 AM

this is so wonderful; especially since the redskins are not in the playoffs. just the “distraction” i needed.

kelley in virginia on December 22, 2008 at 11:19 AM

JJJ is just another ChiTcago corruptocrat. How is that news?

The Machine doesn’t like snitches. JJJ’s days are numbered.

DannoJyd on December 22, 2008 at 11:31 AM

I think we have gone where we have never been before as the low lifers and political opportunists see green in their future. Taxpayers money in their pot, pet rocks for our pot.

tarpon on December 22, 2008 at 11:33 AM

Who would you want to be?

Client number 9 or Candidate number 5?

9 had to resign being Governor of New York.. but 5 is still in office..

DaveC on December 22, 2008 at 11:34 AM

The nut doesn’t fall far from the nut tree.

I have to go with Akzed, the government seems to be overstuffed with scumbags and criminals, the deeper we dig the more we find.

Bishop on December 22, 2008 at 11:34 AM

Hey! It looks as if Emanuel has been cleared of any wrong doing.

What a surprise! /sarc

DannoJyd on December 22, 2008 at 11:40 AM

So when will Hussein’s presser about his staff’s absolute and complete non-involvement with Blago’s corruption take place. I say the over/under is Xmas, so it’s going to be either the 24th or the 26th, so that it can be best ignored by those who care the least about it, the press.

Akzed on December 22, 2008 at 12:08 PM

I actually don’t fault J.J. Jr for this. He didn’t go along with Blago when the Guv tried to extort $25K out of him for the wife’s job and when the chance to get in the Senate for free came up he told the feds that he wanted that gig and THEY said it was OK to wait until after the election.

grdred944 on December 22, 2008 at 12:10 PM

Caprocracy.

Akzed on December 22, 2008 at 12:26 PM

Somewhere in the middle of all this political filth; Obama will be found wallowing. They are all connected in this.
Guardian on December 22, 2008 at 11:01 AM

Fortunately for us, the MSM will be on hand with sponges, soap and water to wash all the political grime off Obama before his next press conference, so he will once again be a shining agent of Hope and Change.

Praise be to Obama!

Outlander on December 22, 2008 at 12:33 PM

“And the congressman said ‘Fine, we’ll get together with you guys, no problem.’ However, at the time — this was late summer or so — there was already those thinking that Barack was going to be elected president and that the governor was going to appoint the next U.S. senator.” Jackson then told the feds he was interested in the Senate seat.
“The U.S. attorney said, ‘Fine, what we’ll do is we’ll put it on hold right now. We will get back with you after the presidential election.”

Oh, so THAT’s it! Jackson Jr. was mad about his wife not getting the Lottery job without a kickback, but he still wanted the Senate seat, which he wouldn’t get if he took down Blagojevich before the election.

Then, after the election, he ends up being Candidate Number 5 (not Number 1) so he blabs on Blagojevich so that Number 1 doesn’t get the job, since Blago has stiffed him twice.

Meanwhile, Jackson Jr. managed to postpone the Blagojevich indictment until AFTER the election, so that it can’t hurt Obama–if Obama has lost the Presidential election, he would have kept his Senate seat, and Jackson Jr. couldn’t have it.

Jesse Jackson Jr. a whistleblower, protecting the people by reporting corruption? Naaahhh, just looking out for Number 1 (himself) and getting payback when he turns out to be Number 5.

Exit question: why didn’t Fitz press Jackson on the Senate-seat issue BEFORE the election?

Steve Z on December 22, 2008 at 12:43 PM

Thugocracy incorporated.

DL13 on December 22, 2008 at 12:54 PM

So they put the investigation on hold until after the election.

roux on December 22, 2008 at 3:32 PM