Dennis Hastert pleads not guilty to federal hush-money charges

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CHICAGO — A federal judge is giving attorneys until Thursday to say if they want him to stay on the Dennis Hastert hush-money case.

During the former House speaker’s first court appearance on Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Thomas M. Durkin said he had no doubt he could be impartial.

Prosecutors haven’t said if they will ask Durkin to recuse himself after Federal Election Commission records showed he donated $500 to the “Hastert for Congress” campaign in 2002 and $1,000 in 2004. But the arraignment gives them the opportunity to make that request. Durkin was an attorney at a Chicago law firm at the time of the contributions.

Hastert’s attorney issued not-guilty pleas on his behalf.

Follow the highlights of today’s court appearance:


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