Sandi Jackson to attend congressional slating - as a voting member only

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Sandi Jackson introduces husband Jesse Jackson Jr. as he addresses his supporters during his victory speech over Deborah “Debbie” Halvorson in March. I Scott Stewart~Sun-Times

Chicago Ald. Sandi Jackson (7th) isn’t running for her husband’s old job, her chief of staff told the Chicago Sun-Times today.

But she is expected to attend a Saturday meeting to slate Jesse Jackson Jr.’s replacement.

As 7th Ward committeeman, Sandi Jackson has a vote in what’s expected to be a contentious battle for a Democratic seat that hasn’t opened in 17 years.

Jackson Jr. resigned last month, amid a federal investigation and as he battles health issues.

Since then, at least seven people have announced they were running to replace him. Thornton Township Commiteeman Frank Zuccarelli said the slating panel has logged 15 possible candidates.

Recent reports raised the possibility of Sandi Jackson throwing her hat in the ring. However, Keiana Barrett, the alderman’s chief of staff, said she answered the question that way: “because politicians are trained to always keep their options open.” When asked if she was saying that Sandi Jackson is definitively NOT running for her husband’s seat, Barrett said: “correct.”

“There has been no concentrated, or deliberate effort on any other front concerning the congressional seat. That was not a true depiction for the overall question,” Barrett said.

As for the slating meeting: “She’s in attendance as a voting member, but she’s not going for the purpose of running for congressional seat.”

Barrett said Sandi Jackson has been focused on taking care of her family and the needs of the 7th ward.

Sandi Jackson, who has been in and out of the spotlight since her husband disappeared from Congress last June, is expected to attend Wednesday’s City Council meeting, Barrett said.

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