Home/Rod Dreher/Annals Of Dirtbaggery

Annals Of Dirtbaggery

Dennis Hastert, before the fall (Angela Farley / Shutterstock.com)

Former GOP House Speaker and convicted dirty old man Dennis Hastert was sentenced yesterday to 15 months in jail for a banking law violation related to his attempt to cover up past as a molester. Get this, though:

The sex abuse victim who testified against Dennis Hastert at the former U.S. House speaker’s sentencing hearing said he ultimately decided to do so publicly after Hastert reached out to his brother for a letter of support asking the judge for leniency.

Scott Cross, a 53-year-old businessman who lives in the Chicago suburbs, was on the Yorkville High School wrestling team that Hastert coached in the 1970s. Struggling to hold back tears on Wednesday, Cross walked the courtroom through a chilling account of the abuse and the way the man he trusted fondled him on a locker room table, a situation Cross said he was manipulated into with a promise that a massage would help him lose weight to qualify for a match.

“Because I trusted him, I believed him and took him at his word,” he said Wednesday in his victim impact statement. “As a 17-year-old boy, I was devastated.”

Scott Cross’s brother is a former top Illinois GOP lawmaker and a one-time protege of Hastert’s.

Can you believe the nerve of that guy? “Hey man, sorry I molested your brother back in the day, but can you write me a letter of recommendation so I get less time on a conviction related to molesting your brother?”

How does that happen? Is Hastert really that cold and self-centered?

Here’s information on the men Hastert molested when he was their high school wrestling coach. 

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

leave a comment

Latest Articles