CHICAGO (AP) — When Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. disappeared from Washington last month for a mysterious medical leave, it took weeks for anyone there to even notice.
It was a measure of the disconnect between the Chicago Democrat's famous name and his lack of stature on Capitol Hill. The son of the legendary civil rights leader has instead become simply a congressman who can deliver the pork back home.
Jackson arrived in Washington 17 years ago with a star quality that set him apart. Yet he has never lived up to those expectations nationally.
One reason for his failure to rise to a more statesmanlike role is the investigation into his dealings with imprisoned former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY'-uh-vich).