CHICAGO—Jesse Jackson Jr is no longer a congressman. He submitted his letter of resignation to the Speaker of the House in Washington DC Wednesday and walked away from a 17 year career in public service.
After six months off the job, his father, Rev Jesse Jackson says his oldest son finally resigned so he could heal.
"Between the political office and the press and politics and his political position, he couldn't do it all," said Rev. Jackson.
At 47, Jackson Jr has more than his health to worry about. Reportedly the subject of a federal probe, in his resignation letter Jackson acknowledges he has erred.
It reads in part: “During this journey I have made my share of mistakes. I am aware of the ongoing federal investigation into my activities and I am doing my best to address the situation responsibly, cooperate with the investigators and accept responsibility for my mistakes, for they are my mistakes and mine alone. None of us is immune from our share of shortcomings or human frailties and I pray that I will be remembered for what I did right.”
What he did wrong could be tied to allegations of misuse of campaign funds, to pay for home furnishings and a Rolex watch for his mistress, and maybe more.
Jackson's attorneys confirmed that he was cooperating with investigators and attempting to reach a resolution in the next few months.
Jackson hasn't worked for the constituents in his district for almost six months. Friends and critics alike have agreed for some time that the 2nd District deserves representation.
Friend and congressman Bobby Rush spoke with Jackson. "He sounded very very sorrowful,” he said.
"He is recovering, and he had to make the ultimate choice between service of his constituents and dealing with his illness," said Jackson's brother, Jonathon. "We look forward to him speaking on his behalf sometime soon."
Jackson's wife, Chicago Alderman Sandi Jackson, has not commented.