Tea party Rep. sued for over $117,000 in unpaid child support

By Stephen C. Webster
Thursday, July 28, 2011 11:06 EDT
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One of the most uncompromising members of the Republican tea party, Congressman Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), has a personal problem he’d rather not discuss in public: his ex-wife is suing him for over $117,000 in unpaid child support.

While Walsh’s lawyer denied that he owes anything near that amount thanks to a stint of unemployment before his surprising election to Congress, Laura Walsh’s lawsuit pointed to a $35,000 loan he personally gave to his campaign, claiming that if he had enough for that, he had enough to help support their 9-year-old child.

“Joe has paid himself back at least $14,200 for the loans he gave himself,” Laura’s attorney wrote, according to The Chicago Sun-Times.

She also asked a judge to revoke his driver’s license until he starts making payments. In prior attempts to have him pay-up, she’s even gone so far as to ask a judge to garnish his wages.

The couple divorced in 2002.

Members of Congress earn $174,000-a-year (PDF), placing them in the top 5 percent of salaried U.S. workers. Combined with their full health benefits, members of the House are compensated at a rate about 3.5 times higher than the average American.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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