Steve Stevlic, one of the top organizers of TeaCon 2011, describes himself as an ordinary family-values man. But, as Gawker reported today, he’s not ordinary in at least one sense: He was arrested last summer for soliciting a prostitute.
Last September, Stevlic mocked and condemned U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., via Twitter over revelations that the congressman had a two-year extra-marital affair. The tweets were sent out two months after Stevlic’s arrest.
Stevlic is one of the primary sponsors behind one of the largest-ever gatherings of tea partiers. About Some 600 supporters turned out today for the opening of the event in Schaumburg, Ill., a northwest suburb of Chicago. Some of the right-wing movement’s highest-profile representatives were on hand.
But after news of Stevlic’s year-old arrest grabbed attention, he apparently decided to steer clear of the proceedings, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Keynoters at TeaCon today included Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, conservative talk radio host Glenn Beck, and U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill., a party favorite and an afternoon highlight.
Walsh has image problems of his own. A Chicago judge ordered him last month to explain why he appears to be $100,000 behind in child-support payments to his ex-wife.
Laura Walsh has hauled her ex-husband to court on numerous occasions since 2002 to seek orders to make him pay his court-ordered child-support obligations. She says he started making half-payments years ago and then completely stopped sending any money.
Although Walsh claimed he was broke, last year he made a $35,000 contribution to his own congressional campaign.
Despite the evangelical-Christian bent of Tea Party supporters, including a growing anti-gay fervor, Walsh’s failure to support his kids has not dampened their enthusiasm for him.