Federal investigators believe Jackson illegally siphoned off campaign funds to pay for renovations to his Chicago home, a $40,000 Rolex for a 'female friend' and plane tickets to fly Washington DC restaurant hostess Giovana Huidobro to Chicago at Jackson's request. There are also reports that Jackson was tipped off about the federal probe into his finances shortly before taking his leave of absence.
Jackson Jr's wife- Chicago Alerwoman Sandi Jackson- may also be facing jail time for her role in redirecting campaign funds. An estimated $20,000 went towards renovations on their Chicago home and many have speculated an increased willingness to cooperate with investigators on her part upon learning about the Rolex and plane tickets.
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There is also the possibility that Jackson Jr could retain his $45,000 a year Congressional pension unless he is convicted of one of several possibly public corruption felony charges.
Meanwhile, Illinois Gov Pat Quinn has tenatively set a special election date to fill Jackson's vacant seat for March 19, although he left open the possibility of moving it further back to April 9th so it would coincide with municipal elections. At least a dozen candidates including state representative Toi Hutchinson and Blagojevich's attorney Sam Adam Jr have announced their plans to run for the vacated seat in Illinois' almost exclusively Democrat 2nd congressional district.
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