Members of Congress are expressing get well sentiments to their infirm colleague. It was a mystery when U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Chicago, pictured) took a leave of absence in June to be treated at an undisclosed location for an undisclosed ailment. Now we know he’s at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota being treated for depression. That information was divulged last weekend.
“I lit a candle at church for him on Saturday, so we pray for him, and for his quick recovery,” said U.S. Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Chicago). U.S. Rep. Judy Biggert (R-Hinsdale) says it can be hard to come forward with depression, because it’s intangible. “I think because of the issue of [it] being depression or anxiety or anything, I think that’s much harder for people to come forward right away and say something about, because you don’t quite understand that, you know, you see a physical ailment, and you can say we’ve gotta fix this and we can see it healing,” she said.
Jackson’s staff first announced the congressman was being treated for exhaustion, then a mood disorder. U.S. Rep. Robert Dold (R-Kenilworth) says the public should have been told of Jackson’s condition sooner, but he says he’s in no position to second-guess how Jackson’s staff handled the situation, and he wishes for Jackson’s recovery and return to Washington.