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Rep. Walsh Remains Mum On Where He’ll Run In 2012

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Congressman Joe Walsh

U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Illinois (Credit: CBS)

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Updated 12/5/11 – 5:05 p.m.

McHENRY, Ill. (CBS) — Tea Party U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) was expected Monday to pick the district in which he will seek reelection, but as of late Monday afternoon, he had yet to make an announcement.

Walsh now represents the 8th Congressional District in the north and northwest suburbs, including parts of Cook, Lake and McHenry counties. But his home landed in the newly redrawn 14th District, where he would face off against fellow Republican Randy Hultgren (R-Ill.)

But Walsh could run in the 8th District again and no other major GOP candidate has emerged in that district.

Published reports say the borders of the redrawn 8th District make it lean Democratic.

Walsh had said over the weekend that he would make a decision on Monday about which district he would run in, but despite several inquiries on Monday, Walsh had not yet revealed his decision as of 5 p.m.

Walsh defeated Democrat Melissa Bean for the 8th District seat last year, and has catapulted to the national stage with his straight-talk approach, biting rhetoric, and frequent propensity for raising his voice.

But he has also found himself embroiled in a scandal, as his ex-wife, Laura Walsh, accuses him of failing to pay more than $117,000 in child support founds.

Walsh admits he did not pay child support between March 2008 and December 2010, but told the Daily Herald in October that he and his ex-wife had a verbal understanding that they would divide their children’s expenses. He accused his ex-wife of trying to take advantage of his position as a U.S. Congressman.

In September, Walsh was ordered to prove that he made the child support payments. Circuit Court Judge Raul Vega said at the hearing in September that he was going to issue a “rule to show cause” why Walsh shouldn’t be held in contempt for falling behind on child support over the past five years.

Walsh also made headlines for skipping President Barack Obama’s speech on job creation in September, and dismissing it as “political theater.”

At a town hall meeting soon after the speech, Walsh also dismissed calls by some constituents to find grounds for compromise between Democrats and Republicans.

“This will get me in trouble,” Walsh predicted at the September town hall meeting. He then raised his voice and told the crowd: “Grow up! Strap your seat belt on and grow up! This country, for better or for worse — and I say for better — is going through a revolution. It’s a good thing.”

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