The Single Most Convincing Defense of Jesse Jackson, Jr.

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
July 13 2012 10:32 AM

The Single Most Convincing Defense of Jesse Jackson, Jr.

It comes from his former colleague Rahm Emanuel, asked about Jacksongate* at a mayoral presser.

“Why should he get back to work to a Congress that does no work?” Emanuel said to laughter. “Why rush it? Last time I checked, Congress had their second repeal of the health care bill. Why rush? Take care of your health. Guess what: Congress is going to be there. Hopefully when you return they’ll be doing real work.”
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I said most convincing. I didn't say entirely convincing. Jackson's been gone since June 8, so he's missed some last minute saves on student loans and transportation funding. (His vote wouldn't have been determinative.) But Emanuel is admirably on-message. If the old Gingrich rule was that a party should dig in on issues with >70% support, the House Republicans whiffed on re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-repeal. Voters don't hate the bill as much as they used to, and a majority of them want to stop frigging talking about it already.

*The Jackson Dome Scandal? No.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.