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Jesse Jackson Jr. argues law is on his side in child support flap

Former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. speaks with his lawyer Brendan Hammer during a divorce hearing at the Daley Center on Feb. 27, 2017. File Photo. | Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Jesse Jackson Jr.’s attorney argued Wednesday that the law in Washington, D.C., requires that the former congressman’s child support payments be recalculated and reduced by $1,200 a month.

The $1,529 monthly payment a judge ordered Jackson to begin paying last month should be cut to $329 to reflect Social Security benefits the children are receiving, his lawyers argued in a court documents filed in the nation’s capital.

It’s the latest in the dual state divorce case of the former political power couple.

Wednesday’s filing is in response to a motion filed by former Ald. Sandi Jackson’s D.C. attorney on Feb. 25, which argued Jesse Jackson Jr. shouldn’t be entitled to any reduction of child support. The motion filed by Jesse Jackson Jr.’s. attorney Anne Marie Jackson on Wednesday asks for a judge to clarify the payment — in light of benefits the children already receive — and to credit the former congressman should there be a reduction in the monthly payment. It also asks that the monthly payment be reduced to $329 per month.

Anne Marie Jackson said Wednesday’s filing seeks to clarify what the child support payments should be pursuant to District of Columbia code.

Jesse Jackson’s Chicago attorney Brendan Hammer on Wednesday noted the former South Side congressman is already paying $1,100 a month for private tuition costs in Washington D.C., and the children are each receiving monthly Social Security “derivative benefits.” Adding $1,529 to that amount would total $3,851 a month.

Jesse Jackson receives more than $138,000 a year in disability checks for having bipolar disorder and depression. And the children receive about $14,400 a year of that amount.

The child support payment of $1,529 was ordered by a judge in Washington on Feb. 7.

Money was already sent for the month of March, according to court filings.

Jesse Jackson Jr. on Monday told reporters in Chicago that he is not a deadbeat and he felt under siege by his estranged wife’s attorneys in Washington and the media in Chicago.

“In the Washington case … my wife is asking for everything,” he said.. “In the Chicago case, and in the Chicago media, I don’t even deserve what I got. … Again, attacked from all angles.”

On Monday a Cook County judge ruled that former Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy and two other former policemen don’t have to respond to subpoenas issued by Jesse Jackson Jr.’s attorneys in Chicago. Lawyers for the targets of the subpoenas say their clients have nothing to do with the case.

Sandi Jackson smiles at her husband, then-U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., during a news conference in Chicago in 2006. (AP File Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Sandi Jackson smiles at her husband, then-U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., during a news conference in Chicago in 2006. (AP File Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Cook County Judge Carole Bellows said Monday she first wants to resolve the issue of whether the case should be heard in Chicago or Washington, D.C. Sandi Jackson is hoping for the case to be resolved in D.C. — where she’s living with their two children, ages 13 and 16. Jesse Jackson Jr., however, is fighting to keep the case in Chicago where his attorneys say “acts” were committed that led to the divorce.

A next court hearing is scheduled for March 15 in the D.C. hearing and April 3 for the Chicago case.

Both Jacksons pleaded guilty in August 2013 to various schemes relating to the looting of his congressional campaign fund. The former South Side 7th Ward alderman and the former 2nd Congressional District lawmaker each went to prison for diverting $750,000 from campaign funds for their personal use between 2005 and 2012.

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