Saturday, September 8, 2012

Jackson back home (the D.C. version), will the campaign soon pick up steam?

JACKSON: Back home, but which one?
Perfect timing, it would seem.

For Congress is scheduled to resume Monday from its summer recess. And Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., D-Ill., is out of the hospital, so to speak. He may very well be able to show up for session and claim NOT to have missed anything of significance.

JACKSON MAY WELL have the most interesting tale to tell among the members of Congress when they are asked, “What did you do on your summer vacation?”

For the Mayo Clinic confirmed Friday that Jackson has been released from the Minnesota-based facility. He has been on medical leave from Congress since June 10, and had been at the Mayo Clinic ever since July 25.

So those people who would claim the Illinois 2nd Congressional district was being short-changed by Jackson might have to pipe down a bit, since it would seem that Jackson’s time off coincided with the time that Congress was out-of-session.

Not that they will pipe down one bit. The people who want to rant about Jesse Jr. are going to do so, regardless of what the facts truly are. Some people just like to rhymes with witch.

IN FACT, I’M wondering if they’re going to take the fact that Jackson, upon his release from the Mayo Clinic, went “home” to Washington – rather than the South Side.

It’s going to be seen as more superficial (and circumstantial) evidence that Jackson doesn’t really live here with us in Chicago (even though the reality of serving in Congress is that – unlike the state Legislature – one has to maintain two homes and spend significant amounts of time within the District of Columbia).

Learning that Jackson went straight to his home in the district’s Adams Morgan neighborhood makes me think he really will show up for “work” on Monday, resuming his seat in the House of Representatives.

Which also means it could be just a matter of time before we see him working the streets of the Far South Side and surrounding suburbs that comprise his congressional district – as part of his effort to get the majority of votes in the Nov. 6 elections.

I’M ACTUALLY LOOKING forward to his first campaign stunt, even if it turns out to be a completely pointless event whose only purpose is to show us that Jackson is physically capable of continuing to hold his current political post.

Because that really will be the only “issue” at stake in this election – no matter how much ideologues want to claim there is some higher principle at stake.

If Jackson can’t show himself physically up to the task, then the voters of the congressional district are going to have to weed through the other three individuals who have aspirations to challenge the congressman.

Not that I think any of them have much of a shot – even if Jackson were to turn up physically decrepit.

REPUBLICAN BRIAN BLOODWORTH, a professor at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, and political independent Marcus Lewis can only dream of gaining the type of clout that would cause people to cast knee-jerk ballots in their favor – the way that some will do for Jesse, Jr.

As for the Rev. Anthony Williams (making his sixth challenge to Jackson, this time as a write-in candidate), I doubt he even dreams of winning. He just enjoys the chance to make his objections about Jackson’s record publicly known – in hopes that “the people” will force the Congressman to mend his ways.

Perhaps it’s also appropriate that Jackson is out of the hospital now, on account of the fact that the commission aligned with him to tout the idea of a new airport in rural Will County is having a meeting Monday in suburban South Holland. Which might make those people who desire the death of a Peotone-based airport and had hoped Jackson’s situation would bolster their viewpoint sad to learn that the project won’t die.

Just like Jackson, Jr.’s congressional career, it would seem.


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