Representative Jesse Jackson Jr.'s treatment will "take time:" wife

Reuters News
Posted: Oct 31, 2012 2:17 PM
Representative Jesse Jackson Jr.'s treatment will "take time:" wife

By Mary Wisniewski

CHICAGO (Reuters) - The condition of Representative Jesse Jackson Jr., who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder earlier this year, is "about the same" after returning to the Mayo Clinic for treatment last week, his wife said on Wednesday.

Sandi Jackson said her husband, who is up for re-election and has not been seen in public since early summer, will not campaign publicly ahead of the November 6 election.

"He's going to stay there for the duration as far as we know right now," she told Reuters.

"He's doing about the same," she said. "He's still at the hospital ... We're still very prayerful that all goes well. You know, these things take time."

Jackson, who has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 1995, is widely expected to cruise to victory despite his ailment and ethics questions hanging over him.

A poll released last week found 58 percent of voters in his heavily Democratic Chicago-area district would vote for Jackson, compared with 27 percent for his Republican opponent and 15 percent for an independent candidate.

Jackson, 47, was treated for at least six weeks at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, this summer for bipolar disorder, a psychological condition marked by extreme mood swings, and has been on medical leave from the House since June.

In addition to his health issues, Jackson has been the subject of a House ethics committee probe over an alleged bribe offered by a Jackson supporter in 2008 to then Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

The bribe was said to be intended to entice Blagojevich to appoint Jackson to the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama. Jackson has admitted to lobbying for the seat, but denied knowing about any money offered to Blagojevich, who has since been convicted on corruption charges and imprisoned.

According to news reports citing unnamed sources, Jackson is also being investigated by the FBI over possible misuse of campaign money. The FBI has not confirmed the reports.

(Writing by James B. Kelleher; Editing by Greg McCune and Mohammad Zargham)