Jesse Jackson Jr.'s federal prison sentence could end as soon as Sept. 20, when he is eligible to trade his jail cell for a halfway house, according to reports.
The disgraced ex-Illinois congressman, a Democrat and son of civil rights activist Rev. Jesse Jackson, was sentenced in 2013 to 2 1/2 years behind bars for pocketing $750,000 in campaign donations for personal use. He now stands to serve less than two years in the slammer with an expected release date of Sept. 20, 2015 and the chance to spend the last year of his term in a halfway home. On good behavior, he could also get a pass to enter home confinement during those last few months, starting in June of next year, the Bureau of Prisons told the Tribune.
Jackson was originally slated to leave prison on Dec. 31, 2015. Serving time at a federal facility in Alabama, he saw his release pushed up after completing a substance-abuse rehab program and refinancing his DC-area home in order to pay off his hefty court fines.
After Jackson's stint ends, his wife -- former Chicago alderman Sandi Jackson -- will head to prison on a tax violation related to his fraud conviction.
The question remains: Will Jackson choose to lay low or launch another bid for public office? Let's assume "no" to the former and "maybe" for the latter. Even if Jackson shies away from the political stage, it's unlikely that he'll evade the limelight forever. He'll find some way to remain in the public eye, possibly as a high-profile activist or private sector sell-out.
Once a politician, always a politican.