A source close to Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill., says his staff or doctors could provide more information on the condition of the congressman as early as today, NPR's David Schaper reports.
Jackson took a leave of absence a month ago, but his office has been vague about the circumstances.
On June 25, his office released a brief statement saying Jackson, 47, was being treated for exhaustion and had been on medical leave since June 10. Last week, another statement said Jackson's condition was more serious than previously thought, that he had been grappling with "certain physical and emotional ailments privately for a long period of time," and that he would require extended inpatient treatment.
Obviously the first concern is that Jackson receive the help and treatment he needs. I pray he does. Michael Moynihan described the famous son of the Rev. Jesse Jackson as "a committed liberal but one with little time for clenched-fist radicalism."
Moynihan, who is blogging for Jennifer Rubin this week over at the Washington Post goes on:
But as ABC News points out, Jackson is facing an ethics probe, and just “days before he left Congress on medical leave, a former fundraiser for Jackson, Raghuveer Nayak, was arrested by the FBI on charges of paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes to doctors.” Any disappearance shrouded in this much secrecy and circumlocution deserves a healthy dose of irritated skepticism.
Need I point out that Jackson is employed by his constituents, most of who cannot simply disappear from their jobs for a month without explanation? When a public servant claims that his ability to perform his job is hindered by health problems — the type that require at least a month of treatment — their medical affairs are no longer entirely private affairs. I can think of only two recent examples of politicians refusing to inform their subjects of serious medical conditions, save oblique references to a general diagnosis: Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez.
Not a great precedent. Moynihan says that Jackson's party should give him until the end of the week to explain or resign his post.