February 08, 2013

CREW Statement on Former Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.

Jesse Jackson Jr.Washington, D.C. — In response to the news that former Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-IL) signed a plea deal with the Department of Justice for converting campaign contributions for personal use, CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan issued the following statement:

“Campaign finance law is clear: Candidates are prohibited from using campaign funds for personal expenses.  For Rep. Jackson and all other candidates for federal office, using campaign funds to buy a $40,000 Rolex watch and furniture for one’s home isn’t just unseemly — it’s flat-out illegal.

“With the writing on the wall well in advance of Election Day, and Rep. Jackson’s resignation just weeks later, it begs the question whether the former congressman held on to his seat to maintain a stronger bargaining position with prosecutors.  The people of Illinois deserve much more from their federally elected officials.  While Rep. Jackson will be required to reimburse the government and may face jail time, the disservice to his constituents likely won’t be forgotten any time soon.”

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is a non-profit legal watchdog group dedicated to holding public officials accountable for their actions. For more information, please visit or contact Jordan Libowitz at 202.408.5565 or

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