Former Republican congressman says he’ll sue Chicago Sun-Times over child-support claims

Alex Pappas Political Reporter
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Former Republican Rep. Joe Walsh said Monday that he plans to sue the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper for reporting that Walsh is trying to stop paying child support now that he’s out of a job.

In a statement on a new website, Walsh stated: “This article by the Sun Times is a deliberate attempt to defame me, and I will sue them immediately.” The site is hosted on a Web domain first registered Jan. 19.

The story’s headline — which has since been changed — was “Ex-Tea Party Rep. Joe Walsh wants to stop paying child support because he’s out of a job.”

It currently reads: “Ex-Tea Party Rep. Joe Walsh insists he’s not trying to stop paying child support.”

The story calls Walsh a “flame-throwing Tea Party Republican” and reports that he has “filed court papers seeking to end his obligation to pay $2,134 per month in child support.”

But Walsh claims that isn’t true. He says he only modified his support agreement to reflect that his employment status changed when he left Congress. Walsh lost re-election bid in November.

“I’ve only been out of Congress for a month, and I expect to be employed again very soon,” he said. “Regardless, I will continue with my child support payments by law until my son Patrick is emancipated.”

The paper also quoted an attorney for Walsh’s ex-wife who says Walsh is behind on his child support payments.

Because of media reports about the child support he pays, Walsh says that he has had “to live with the ‘deadbeat dad’ label, even though the original case against me was dropped one year ago, and my ex-wife acknowledged that I have always been a loving and supportive father.”

“The Sun-Times has had a vendetta against me since I was first elected,” Walsh said. “I will no longer take it. ”

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