Hastings Says Never Told of $220K Settlement for Sex Harassment Claims Against Him
Alexandra Glorioso, Politico, December 8, 2017
The U.S. Treasury Department settled a $220,000 sexual-harassment lawsuit on behalf of Congressman Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) in 2014, according to Roll Call.
But the South Florida lawmaker said he was never informed of any settlement.
“This matter was handled solely by the Senate Chief Counsel for Employment. At no time was I consulted, nor did I know until after the fact that such a settlement was made,” said Hastings in a written statement to POLITICO Florida.
Hastings said the original lawsuit was dismissed in 2012 and that he was cleared in 2014 by the House Committee on Ethics.
The lawsuit was filed in 2011 by Judicial Watch, a public interest group. In the lawsuit, a former staffer on the United States Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, Packer, alleges she was the victim of “unwelcome sexual advances” and “unwelcome touching” by then-chairman Hastings.
Packer also claimed retaliation by the congressman and his staff director, Fred Turner, who also was named in the suit. The conservative judicial watchdog charged that Packer was unfairly targeted because she was a Republican serving in a commission ruled by Democrats.