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.