Inside the Beltway, a place where shocking revelations have been a way of life over the decades, this one still sent shock waves.
Michael D. Shear and Michael S. Schmidt of the New York Times report that former House Speaker Dennis Hastert is accused of paying a man not to say publicly that Hastert had inappropriately touched him decades ago while Hastert was a high school teacher and wrestling coach in Illinois. The Times cites two unnamed people briefed on the evidence uncovered in an F.B.I. probe.
The feds have accused Hastert of making cash withdrawals designed to hide those payments and for lying to federal authorities about the purpose of the withdrawals.
We’re talking serious money.
The Times reports that the indictment said that in 2010, the man met with Mr. Hastert several times and at some point Hastert agreed to pay him $3.5 million “in order to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct against” the man.
The Times reports that the indictment stunned Hastert’s friends and former Capitol Hill colleagues, and that they were struggling to make sense of it all.
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