The Hastert Rule

Today Federal District Judge Thomas M. Durkin sentenced former United States Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert to 15 months in prison for violating bank reporting rules by structuring bank withdrawals to hide massive payments he made over the years to one of his victims of child sexual abuse.  See http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/28/us/dennis-hastert-sentencing.html?emc=edit_na_20160427&nlid=67236899&ref=cta&_r=0

Hastert ultimately admitted to being a serial molester of boys when he was the high school wrestling coach at Yorkville High School in Yorkville, Illinois.  Oh, and guess what?  The married father of two sons also was a Boy Scout volunteer with Explorer Post 540 of Yorkville for 17 years, during the time he was a high school teacher and coach.  The sex crimes were well outside the statute of limitations, but federal prosecutors went after Hastert on the banking law violations and for lying to investigators.

“Nothing is more stunning than having ‘serial child molester’ and ‘speaker of the House’ in the same sentence,” said Judge Durkin.  It’s not at all stunning to me.  Having read the very meager Michigan State Police file on their investigation into the pedophile and child pornography ring operating in Michigan in the 1970’s on North Fox Island, this is no shock, no surprise.  And it should not be a shock that people like this have the power to silence their victims and anyone who might make trouble for them.  What’s stunning is that federal prosecutors and this federal judge were not the cowards that Oakland County prosecutors and judges were and are.  They went after Hastert and in some small way vindicated Hastert’s victims.

“Judge Durkin pointed out the vulnerability of Mr. Hastert’s young victims and said they were damaged for years.  ‘If there’s a public shaming of the defendant because of the conduct he’s engaged in, so be it,’ he said.”  Wow.  What a concept.  Can you imagine the shame Hastert’s victims have carried for decades after being raped and sexually abused by him?

I guess the real “Hastert Rule” is:  If you want to molest boys, your best bet is to be a high school wrestling coach and boy scout volunteer.  It’s so obvious, no one will believe it.  At least he had to pay one of his victims a ton of dough over the past decades.  Hey Denny:  The majority of the majority now knows who you really are.