An Illinois congressman is missing and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) says it is time for him to check in. U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Chicago, pictured) has been on a leave of absence for almost a month and so far his family and office aren’t talking about his condition, other than to say he is suffering from “exhaustion” and that he has “physical and emotional ailments.” They also aren’t talking about when he might return to work.
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Durbin says while his heart goes out to the congressman and his family, it is coming to a point where Jackson must disclose his condition. “If there is some medical necessity for him not saying more at this moment then I will defer to that but he will have to soon make a report on what he is struggling with, the physical condition he is struggling with,” Durbin said. Durbin points to U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) who’s staff did not hide the senator’s stroke earlier this year and kept the media abreast of his condition. Later Kirk put out a video explaining his status. “I thought Senator Kirk’s video talking about his rehabilitation answered hundreds of questions that I was facing and I think to the satisfaction of Illinois voters, told them what his current situation is and what his hopes are about recovering,” Durbin said.
Jackson took a medical leave on June 10th. Last week his office disclosed that his ailments are more serious than previously believed. In addition a statement released by his office says he is staying at an inpatient facility but didn’t specify where. Jackson has come under intense scrutiny in recent years for ties to imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich and an extramarital affair. Despite a pending U.S. House ethics investigation connected to Blagojevich, he has been widely expected to win re-election in November.
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