A former United States senator says the press is being too nosy when it comes to the condition and whereabouts of U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Chicago). The congressman has been out of action for a month, his staff first citing exhaustion and now a mood disorder, from which he is said to be recuperating at an unspecified residential treatment facility.
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Former Sen. Roland W. Burris (pictured) is criticizing the press for being so eager to learn more details. “You’re here to cover Jesse Jr. That is ridiculous! And I’ve got enough seniority around here to tell you media people to cool it. You did it to me, now you’re gonna try to do this to Jesse Jr., just hounding people. You ought to get a life,” he said.Burris says he has also admonished Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Chicago), both of whom have said Jackson has an obligation to tell the citizens of Illinois more about his condition.
Burris says he doesn’t have any more information about Jackson than anybody else.Burris appeared at an Operation PUSH meeting in Chicago and ran interference so the press would not have access to the Rev. Jesse Jackson, the leader of Operation PUSH and the congressman’s father. Burris, 74, was an Illinois political fixture for decades. The Centralia native has served as comptroller and attorney general, has run for governor, and was appointed to serve 22 months in the U.S. Senate 2009-10.