CHICAGO
11/08/2012 11:10 am ET

Jesse Jackson Jr. Plea Deal? Reelected Illinois Congressman Reportedly In Talks With Feds

Newly reelected U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) is reportedly attempting to reach a plea bargain with federal investigators digging into allegations that he misused campaign funds.

The Chicago Sun-Times' Michael Sneed reports that Jackson is engaged in "ongoing" plea discussions with the feds concerning a $40,000 Rolex watch the Chicago Democrat allegedly bought, with campaign funds, for a female friend -- in addition to previous reports of campaign funds used to decorate Jackson's Washington, D.C. home.

Still, "no one has pled guilty," the anonymous source reportedly told Sneed.

Jackson spokesman declined to comment on the tip, the Sun-Times reports. An unnamed spokesperson told ABC Chicago Wednesday evening that they were not aware of any sort of plea discussions.

Jackson was handily reelected Tuesday, winning 63 percent of the vote in Illinois' 2nd congressional district despite both the controversy and, essentially, not campaigning.

The congressman has been away from work since June and has remained silent on when he aims to return to Washington after re-admitting himself to Mayo Clinic for treatment for bipolar disorder last month. Jackson voted by absentee ballot in the election while declining to hold an election night event.

He said in a statement from Mayo Clinic Tuesday that he was "humbled and moved" by his constituents' support.

The Sun-Times previously broke the story of a federal probe into Jackson's congressional finances amid reports of "suspicious activity." The probe 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.

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