Tea Party Favorite in Hot Water Over Child Support Claims


Family attorneys in Pasadena have seen a number of high-profile child support cases thrust into the public eye this year, and the latest to makes headlines comes from the world of politics. Outspoken Tea Party congressman Rep. Joe Walsh is being accused of owing more than $115,000 in child support. Walsh says his ex-wife, Laura Walsh, is lying about their payment arrangement; the two are expected to face off in court in the upcoming days.

According to the Daily Herald, Walsh has called the reported total "wildly and off-the-charts inaccurate" and that his ex-wife's allegations are a "misguided attempt" to exploit his position as a member of congress. The couple had a "verbal understanding" to divide the children's expenses to avoid resorting to traditional child support payments, Walsh says. Under this understanding, the congressman was not required to make any payments from March 2008 and December 2010, Walsh claims, adding that he even paid her more than was required from November 2005 to June 2007. He asked the judge to deny Laura Walsh's request for his current payments to be increased. He is also asking that her demand to suspend his driver's license and freeze his bank accounts also be lifted.

Walsh says the timing of his ex-wife's filing, just weeks after he won the 2008 election, is suspicious. Her attorney has poo-pooed the congressman's suspicions by telling the Daily Herald, "What does the congressman think we should have done? Not filed because he was a congressman?"

In September, Cook County Judge Raul Vega sided with Laura Walsh. Judge Vega told Walsh he needed to prove that he made the child support payments in question.

Currently, $2,134 is deducted from Walsh's income as a member of congress every month to go toward his back child support obligations as part of a withholding order.