Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.’s mother, Jackie Jackson, said Friday in a speech at the Rainbow PUSH conference that her son was dealing with “enormous” political disappointment because he thought he would have a chance to be senator or mayor.
She said he “is unwell, and he needs a moment to heal,” according to ABC Chicago.
“He thought he was going to be the senator; thought he was going to have a chance to run for mayor,” Jackie Jackson said. “And young people don’t bounce back with disappointment like me and my husband.”
They were the most detailed remarks that anyone in the congressman’s family or staff have offered about Jackson’s condition since he first took a leave because of “exhaustion.” On Wednesday, his office released a statement saying that Jackson, 47, is receiving “intensive medical treatment at a residential treatment facility for a mood disorder. He is responding positively to treatment and is expected to make a full recovery.”
Rev. Jesse Jackson, the congressman’s famous father, said on Thursday said at an unrelated media event that his son “needs and deserves privacy.” Jackson previously commented that it was “inappropriate” for him to discuss his son’s condition.
Demonstrating how the Congressman’s condition is the talk of Chicago, even Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel weighed in on Thursday.
“I know a lot of people are saying when is he going to get back to work, he should get back to work—why would he go back to work to a Congress that does no work,” Emanuel said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “Why rush? Take care of your health. Guess what? Congress is going to be there.”
Jackson was a rising star in Chicago Democratic circles for years, mentioned as a future Senator from Illinois or mayor of Chicago, but his soaring career was derailed when he was sucked into the scandal that sent former Mayor Rod Blagojevich to prison—the mayor’s attempts to sell President Obama’s former U.S. Senate seat to the highest bidder.