And conveniently he does so two weeks after the election:
Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) submitted a letter announcing his resignation from Congress to Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Wednesday, according to a Boehner aide.
“For seventeen years I have given 100 percent of my time, energy, and life to public service,” Jackson wrote.
“However, over the past several months, as my health has deteriorated, my ability to serve the constituents of my district has continued to diminish. Against the recommendations of my doctors, I had hoped and tried to return to Washington and continue working on the issues that matter most of the people of the Second District. I know now that will not be possible.”
Jackson’s resignation comes amid reports that he is being investigated by the Justice Department for allegedly misusing campaign donations to redecorate his home.
Reports earlier this month said Jackson was negotiating a plea deal with federal investigators that would require him to resign from Congress, citing health reasons, and repay the campaign funds.
Jackson’s office has not commented on the reported plea talks.
Jackson easily won reelection in his heavily Democratic district. He released a robocall asking his supporters to stand with him as he dealt with his health issues but did not take part in any other campaign activities.
Jackson has faced pressure in recent days from many Democrats, including Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, to speak to his constituents and assure them that he would be able to continue serving effectively in Congress.
Both President Obama and Emanuel endorsed Jackson in his primary against former Rep. Debbie Halvorson (D-Ill.) earlier this year.
If he’s truly ill, I hope he gets better but – as always – I question the timing.
Did the DOJ investigation on Jackson start before or after his primary? Just curious. In any event, the seat will likely stay Democrat (whether by appointment or by special election) as Illinois has this annoying habit of continually putting liberals – especially those of the corruptocrat variety – into public office over and over again. Oh well.