Jesse Jackson Jr. pleads guilty in campaign case


WASHINGTON (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., holding back tears, entered a guilty plea today in federal court to criminal charges that he engaged in a scheme to spend $750,000 in campaign funds on personal items.

He faces 46 to 57 months in prison under a plea deal with prosecutors

Before entering the plea to the conspiracy charge, Jackson told U.S. District Judge Robert L. Wilkins, "I've never been more clear in my life" in his decision to plead guilty.

Later, when Judge Wilkins asked if Jackson committed the acts outlined in court papers, the former congressman replied, "I did these things." He added later, "Sir, for years I lived in my campaign," and used money from the campaign for personal use.

Jackson dabbed his face with tissues, and at point a court employee brought some tissues to Jackson's lawyer, who gave them to the ex-congressman.

Jackson told the judge he was waiving his right to trial.

"In perfect candor, your honor, I have no interest in wasting the taxpayers' time or money," he said.

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