Isn’t this becoming a tradition in Illinois politics? A couple of the state’s recent governors went from the big mansion to the Big House, too, and so did Jesse Jackson Jr’s predecessor in his House seat, Mel Reynolds. Jackson will follow in that tradition, according to a new report from the Chicago Sun-Times’s Michael Sneed about the structure of his plea deal on corruption charges (via the Daily Caller):
Sneed has learned a plea deal is now on the table between former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. and federal authorities probing allegations of campaign fund misuse.
Sneed is told the plea deal includes Jackson serving time in federal prison.
“Significant jail time is now definitely a part of the deal,” said a top Sneed source close to the probe.
Yes, Sneed writes about herself in the third person. Bear with it for a bit longer, because the story gets better. The federal investigation into Jackson started off by looking at both him and his wife Sandi. Now, however, the investigation of Sandi Jackson has spun off into its own probe, and Sandi Jackson believes that Jesse sold her out, according to Sneed:
“But I think [Jackson’s wife] Sandi, feels like she was thrown under the bus by her husband, ” now that a separate probe has begun on her, a second source added.
Sandi Jackson claims she was stunned by campaign finance abuse disclosures against her husband, who has been treated for mental disorders and allegedly spent $40,000 on a Rolex watch purchased with campaign funds.
Mrs. Jackson was a Chicago alderman until last month, and also a paid consultant to her husband’s campaign — to the tune of $5,000 a month, which only ended well after the election. According to the Sun-Times report, investigators haven’t yet decided whether to charge Sandi Jackson, but they’re taking a long look at her involvement in her husband’s alleged corruption.
It’s possible that investigators opened the probe against Jackson’s wife to put more pressure on him to accept prison time as part of the deal, too. That would certainly make sense, especially after the public-relations effort put into painting Jackson as a victim of mental illness, which may still be true, of course. The machinations appear to be coming to an end soon, though, and we’ll soon find out whether Jackson threw his wife under the bus or whether he’s going to rescue her from it.
Update: Michael Sneed is a woman; I’ve corrected a pronoun above for proper reference. Thanks to David K for the correction. (And also Tom V, whose e-mail came immediately afterward.)