Jesse Jackson Jr. to be sentenced

Jesse Jackson Jr. is scheduled to be sentenced in federal court on Wednesday after pleading guilty to charges he illegally spent $750,000 in campaign funds on personal items.

The former Illinois Democrat and son of the civil rights leader will be sentenced in Washington, D.C., on a felony conspiracy charge.

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Jackson admitted to living off of his campaign funds for years. His purchases included televisions, appliances, movie tickets and a $43,000 watch.

Jackson could face up to 4 years in prison, but his lawyers have argued for leniency, citing health concerns; his two children, ages 9 and 13; and Jackson’s continued treatment for bipolar disorder.

The Chicago lawmaker resigned from Congress last year following an enigmatic and prolonged absence from Capitol Hill, which landed him at the Mayo Clinic for several months in a bipolar treatment program.

While a handful of his former constituents wrote the sentencing judge, Amy B. Jackson, asking her to bring down the full letter of the law on Jackson, some of his former colleagues and political associates have stood by him.

Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), the chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, asked the judge for leniency, as did an Illinois teamster representative who called on Jackson to “be merciful.”

Jackson's wife, Sandi Jackson, will also be sentenced on Wednesday after pleading guilty to failing to report $600,000 in taxable income.