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Lawsuits, Debts Plague Rep. Bobby Rush

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From 2004 to 2008, Rush listed his seat on the board of directors of the Beloved Community Family Services Corp., one of several social services spinoffs affiliated with the church. He did not list the group on his most recent report.

He regularly donates to the church from his own campaign funds, however, providing more than $175,000 in gifts, an interest-free loan and other donations from 2004 to 2010. 

The Illinois lawmaker faced another lawsuit in 2006 when the Highland Community Bank alleged that he defaulted on a 2005 promissory note valued at more than $12,000. The bank sought repayment of more than $11,000.

Court documents indicate Rush and the bank reached an agreement in 2008 to settle for $13,000. But a 2009 document indicated the amount remained outstanding. 

The court subsequently sought to garnish Rush’s Congressional paycheck for those funds, but the case was closed in March 2009 and the bank reported Rush paid the full amount. 

Members are required to disclose debts that exceed $10,000 to a single creditor at any point in the calendar year, even if the loan is worth less at the end of the year. 

Rush said that he was not obligated to report the promissory note.

“I had no obligation to report this debt on financial disclosure documents,” he wrote in the statement. “I answered this question forthrightly and to the best of my knowledge.”

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