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Politician settles suit made by ex-wife over child support

High-profile divorces often occur in the realm of celebrities but a divorce between a U.S. congressman and his former wife in 2004 left many arguing over the politician's credibility. According to a lawsuit filed by his former wife, the congressman owed back child support. Factoring in interest, the suit alleged that he owed his former wife $117,437. Parents that are owed support in New Jersey may have grounds to file a similar suit.

The lawsuit was filed after the politician had won his first term in 2010. Political experts believed that the ongoing suit would become a major factor in his campaign for re-election.

Currently, the politician is doing battle with a Democrat whose own campaign has been using the allegations made against him to its advantage. Throughout his competitor's campaign, the man's past has been brought up several times.

According to the politician, the allegations made by his wife were not true. He went on to say that he endured the attacks made by his political enemies for his family and, contrary to popular belief, he has been very involved in raising his three children.

The congressman and his former wife were married in 1987 and divorced in 2004. During that time, the couple birthed three children that are now 24, 21 and 17 years old. Their mother, 47, is a consultant at a global public policy firm. According to records, the congressman currently earns $174,000 a year from which $2,134 are deducted on a monthly basis to provide support to the youngest of the couple's children.

Recently, a settlement was reached in the lawsuit filed by the children's mother. The details of the agreement were kept private, but a statement was issued that said that the couple now agreed: The congressman never owed child support.

He will continue to have support payments taken out of his paychecks on a monthly basis until his 17-year-old son graduates from high school.

Source: The Bellingham Herald, "Congressman, ex-wife settle lawsuit over child support," Rick Pearson and Katherine Skiba, April 20, 2012

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