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Jesse Jackson Jr. Mayo Clinic Return? Congressman May Be Heading Back For Treatment

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In this March 20, 2012 file photo, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill. speaks in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)
In this March 20, 2012 file photo, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill. speaks in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) has had a rough week -- and the negative attention is apparently causing his doctors to recommend the congressman's return to the Mayo Clinic.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times' Michael Sneed, Jackson may be heading back to Mayo. Jackson, according to Sneed's source, "is finding it difficult to continue his treatment because the press is staking out his home and making access to his doctor, who is within a short walking distance from his home, incredibly hard."

The Chicago Democrat disappeared from the public eye over four months ago before going on an extended medical leave to receive treatment for bipolar disorder and related depression and gastrointestinal issues. Jackson returned to his D.C. home from the clinic early last month and, according to a Gawker report, was recently spotted drinking at a bar near his home on two separate occasions.

Aside from telling a reporter with The Daily last week that he is "not well" and continues to see his doctor twice daily, Jackson has not spoken publicly about his condition or when he plans to return to work in Washington.

Jackson remains on the Nov. 6 ballot and appears to be a shoo-in for re-election, even though he has not campaigned publicly. Nevertheless, according to an NBC Chicago report, his campaign has spent $1 million since 2011, nearly the same amount as U.S. Rep. Judy Biggert, who is in the midst of a heated race. CBS Chicago reports that $110,099 has been spent by Jackson's campaign since the congressman's leave began on June 10.

Among the Jackson campaign's expenditures, according to NBC, are fees paid to a political consulting firm owned by his wife, Chicago Alderman Sandi Jackson. Though the payments are legal, they "raise ethical questions," the Better Government Association's Andy Shaw told the station.

Jackson's silence has continued in the face of a new federal investigation into "suspicious activity" concerning the congressman's campaign finances. According to the Chicago Tribune, the Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into $8,000 Jackson's campaign spent on office furniture from a suburban furniture company in September 2010.

The new federal probe, which began shortly before the congressman went on leave, is unrelated to an ongoing "pay-to-play" ethics investigation concerning whether Jackson was aware of efforts to raise money for imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich in exchange for his appointment to the Senate in 2008.

Earlier on HuffPost:

Jesse Jackson Jr. Medical Condition
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