Jesse Jackson Jr. (D) of Illinois sent a letter of resignation to House Speaker John Boehner. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, a Democrat, has five days to schedule an election to replace Jackson and the election must be held within 115 days. There are unconfirmed reports of an FBI investigation into misuse of campaign funds.
(AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)
Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel confirmed his office had received a letter of resignation from Jackson but did not comment further.
Jackson, 47, disappeared in June, and it was later revealed that he was being treated at the Mayo Clinic for bipolar disorder and gastrointestinal issues. He returned to his Washington home in September, but went back to the clinic the next month, with his father saying his son had not yet "regained his balance." He left the clinic a second time earlier this month.
His return to the clinic in October came amid reports that he faced a new federal investigation into potential misuse of campaign funds to decorate his home. The Chicago Sun-Times first reported the probe, citing anonymous sources. An FBI spokesman in Washington, Andrew Ames, has told The Associated Press he could neither confirm nor deny the existence of a federal investigation into Jackson.
Jackson was easily re-elected on Nov. 6 representing his heavily-Democratic district, even though his only communication with voters was a robocall asking them for patience. He spent election night at the Mayo Clinic, but later issued a statement thanking his supporters and saying he was waiting for his doctors' OK before he could "continue to be the progressive fighter" they'd known for years.
Jackson, whose father is the Rev. Jesse Jackson, took office in 1995 after winning a special election in a landslide. Voters in the district have said Jackson's family name and attention to local issues have been the reasons for their support. He's easily won every election since taking office and brought home close to $1 billion in federal money for his district during his tenure.