Former Illinois Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., and his wife Sandra, leaves federal court in Washington, Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2013. Jackson was sentenced to two and a half years in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to scheming to spend $750,000 in campaign funds on TV’s, restaurant dinners, an expensive watch and other costly personal items. His wife received a sentence of one year. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
There may be some good news at last for ex-Chicago Ald. Sandi Jackson, wife of disgraced Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr.
“The hottest rumor to come down the political pike: Speculation President Barack Obama may pardon former Ald. Sandi Jackson before he leaves office in January 2017,” Sun-Times political reporter Michael Sneed said Monday.
The couple was sentenced to prison time in August after pleading guilty using some $750,000 in campaign funds for lavish and often bizarre personal expenses. The former congressman was sentenced to 30 months of jail time for his illegal spending while his wife was sentenced to one year for filing false tax returns.
Jackson Jr. begins his prison term Nov. 1. Sandi Jackson’s lawyers were able to get an order from the judge allowing her to remain free to care for the couple’s young children until her husband completes his term.
In his combined terms as president, Obama has pardoned 39 people, most recently granting clemency to 17 felons convicted of non-violent offenses this past March. According an analysis from ProPublica, Obama has granted clemency at a lower rate than any other president in modern history.
If Obama were to grant Sandi Jackson a pardon when he leaves office, the Sun-Times notes she will have already served half of her sentence.