Jonathan Jackson talks as Jesse Jr. begins sentence

Jonathan Jackson is the first member of the family to talk about Jesse Jackson Jr. since he reported to prison earlier this week.
November 1, 2013 4:51:15 AM PDT
Jonathan Jackson is the first member of the family to talk about Jesse Jackson Jr. since he reported to prison earlier this week.

Jesse Jackson Jr. is just two days into a 2-1/2 year prison sentence for illegally spending $750,000 of campaign money.

His brother, Jonathan Jackson, says Jackson Jr. is accepting responsibility and moving forward. But Jonathan Jackson, who spoke on a national radio program Thursday, also noted that, at times, there are two systems of justice in this country.

It's been 48 hours since former Congressman Jackson was spotted heading to a North Carolina prison and Thursday, we're hearing from his family in Chicago.

"Yes, my brother has acknowledged doing some wrong for misusing his campaign funds for that he has deep regrets and we accept that.," Jonathan Jackson said.

The former Congressman's brother is friends with Rev. Al Sharpton and talked on his radio show Thursday afternoon, acknowledging that Jackson Jr. must repay every penny.

"He will repay every dime, although no individuals came forward saying they wanted their campaign funds returned, not one taxpayer was hurt, having used one dime," said Jonathan Jackson.

While defending his brother, however, Jackson pointed to this U.S. Politics Today headline. It reads, "Jesse Jackson, Jr. And Jamie Dimon: A tale of Two Systems of Justice." Dimon is the CEO of JPMorgan Chase, which is negotiating a settlement with the government after the mortgage crisis. No bank individuals face criminal charges.

"There is a bigger issue besides my brother's case, but it does bring the issue of proportionality into view," Jonathan Jackson said.

On the radio show the words "racial injustice" were used, questions about fairness between Jackson Jr. and those in the banking industry.

"The issue is what has been the cost of mortgages and foreclosures and destroying of credit in our community that continues to go on," Jonathan Jackson said. "Not one banker has been held accountable for any of these crimes."

Jonathan Jackson and Rev. Sharpton, along with other guests on the program, talked about racial disparities in the justice system and how that impacts the rest of the African-American community.

Jonathan Jackson also told ABC7 Eyewitness News he plans to speak more about his brother's situation at Rainbow PUSH headquarters Saturday morning.