Deal Hudson is a religious man with a funny name. He publishes a journal called Crisis, a Conservative Roman Catholic periodical, and is a name well-known among virtually any cadre of Bible-thumping holier-than-thous. Because both Deal and President George the Lesser are tight with Jesus, it's inevitable that Deal would push his deal on Chicken George at some point.
As you well know, Chicken George is a weak-willed man. Many uninformed people are. So when Deal Hudson promised Chicken George that he could become the president's right-hand Jesus man, reaching out to religious groups across the nation and convincing them to cast their votes for the burning Bush, Chicken George said yes. Why wouldn't he? Chicken George's most-trusted advisor, other than the old man in the other room who has three heart attacks a week, is Karl Rove. If Karl says Deal Hudson is OK, then Deal Hudson is OK with Chicken George.
Surely, Rove showed — or at least explained — Hudson's resume to Chicken George. Chicken George is not a wise man, but he surely knew that being an instructor at Fordham University, which Hudson was from 1989 to 1995, was impressive. Being the publisher of a religious magazine sure didn't hurt Hudson, either — especially when that magazine embraces such Republican sirens as Peggy Noonan. Chicken George was smitten.
"Like many people, I have done things in my life that I regret ... No one regrets my past mistakes more than I do."— Deal Hudson
August 18, 2004
The National Review
According to an article in the New York Times, Rove first learned of Hudson in 1998 when a study published in Crisis argued that Republicans could gain votes by targeting regular churchgoers, who in the past had often leaned Democratic. Rove, who'd recently thought up the "compassionate conservative" phrase that his friend Chicken George would soon use to deceive the nation, thought someone like Hudson deserved a prime spot on Bush's team of hangers-on and part-time attack dogs. When approached by Rove, Hudson agreed to, in his own words, "be part of (Bush's) team advising on their outreach to Catholic voters."
William Donahue, the president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, is among those who has been impressed with what Hudson has been able to accomplish for the president. Hudson, Donahue told the New York Times, was an almost indispensable tool for Chicken George in his efforts to reach out to Catholics from behind the military barricades at the White House. Surely, having Crisis Magazine as his pulpit — the magazine's Web site is currently running a "12 Myths Every Catholic Should Be Able To Answer" promotion where subscribers to an e-mail newsletter immediately receive information that debunks "myths" like myth no. 8, "Dissent is actually a good thing, since we should all keep our minds open to new ideas," myth no. 9, "There’s no such thing as absolute truth. What’s true for you may not be true for me," and myth no. 6, "If the Church truly followed Jesus, they’d sell their lavish art, property, and architecture, and give the money to the poor" — was seen as one big feather in Deal Hudson's cap.
In a recent essay he wrote for the conservative National Review, Hudson argued that John Kerry — not all politicians, and certainly not all candidates in the upcoming presidential election, but just John Kerry — should not be allowed to use Church institutions for his campaign. Hudson even advocated declaring schools and hospitals "off limits" to Kerry. Later in the same piece, Hudson boasts of his influencing a recent column by syndicated columnist William F. Buckley that inevitably forced the moderator of the "Catholics for Kerry" Web site to quit his full-time job with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops because of his affiliation with Chicken George's political opponent.
Later in the same essay, Deal Hudson announced he could no longer serve as an advisor to Bush because he feared he would become a distraction.
"Fordham followed its policy rigorously in this matter and initiated an investigation upon receipt of the student complaint. The professor later surrendered his tenure at Fordham. ... Something inappropriate was done."— Elizabeth Schmalz
Vice President for Public Affairs
When Rove first snuggled up to Hudson, he apparently didn't wonder why an instructor at Fordham University would suddenly give up six years of tenure. Had he been asked, it's hard to say whether Hudson would have shared his reasons — reasons which would seem to violate the guidelines that readers of Hudson's publication use to direct their lives.
According to the New York Times, a person involved with Fordham University's investigation said a female undergraduate in one of Hudson's classes reported to the university that Hudson made sexual advances toward her after she had become drunk at a bar. It should be noted that Hudson mentioned in his essay that he's been "happily" married for 17 years, meaning his little escapade with the intoxicated co-ed took place at some point in the earlier years of his marriage. Those truly must have been happy times.
In the same essay, Hudson makes a reference to "past annulments for my marriages," suggesting that Deal may have had some issues with fidelity and trust before what he calls "my conversion to the Catholic Church." Other prominent individuals who converted to the Catholic Church after dark moments in their lives include David Berkowitz, known to many as the serial killer "Son of Sam," and Jeffrey Dahmer, known to many as the serial killer who chopped up his victims, placed their remains in his freezer, and dined on them at later dates.
The National Catholic Reporter gets into far more detail about Hudson's fun Fordham days than I'm sure Deal is comfortable with:
"I told him everything about me," (the student) recalled in a four-page document she provided to Fordham administrators at the conclusion of the semester. "He knew I was a ward of the court, without parents, severely depressed, and even suicidal. I discussed with him why I had lost my faith in God, in humanity, and in myself. He was extremely attentive and genuinely concerned."
In other words, he discovered she was vulnerable and impressionable. Then, the predator finds his opening:
(The student learned that) Hudson would be meeting a group of NYU students at Tortilla Flats, a popular West Village bar where, according to a current review, "friendly waiters sometimes surprise you with free shots of tequila." He invited the student to join him. "I was very reluctant," wrote the student, who, at age 18, was still three years shy of the legal drinking age. "I knew I would be the youngest, as well as the newcomer to their frequent gatherings," she wrote. "He promised not to tell the others my age. I decided to go."
Things get a little hot and crazy ...
"As we grew more and more drunk, stranger and stranger things began to occur," wrote the student. Hudson had his arms around two NYU students, said Poppas. "Dr. Hudson was heavily French kissing both girls, alternating from one to the other… ."
And then Deal Hudson spots his opening, making sexual advances toward the drunken 18-year-old ward of the court in the taxi on the way home. They then boarded a train to Fordham.
"On the train, he began to feel my breasts outside my sweater and coat. We missed the Fordham stop (I'm not sure whether on purpose or not). We went to his house, he put me in his car, and he went up to tell his wife he was bringing a student back to Fordham."
Once in the car, said the student, "Dr. Hudson told me to lay my head on his lap, suggesting fellatio when he unzipped his zipper. I did both. I sat up and said 'Hold on a second, wait just a minute…' He replied 'Yes, let's wait till we get to my office.'"
At Fordham, "He took me into his office, laid his long coat down, and laid me down on top of it. He began touching me, unzipping my jeans and pulling up my shirt. I was just glad to be laying down, I could barely feel my body."
Hudson performed a sexual act on the student. He asked her to reciprocate, which she did. "Then he took me to Sesqui, my dorm," recalled the student.
But then it was up to Deal Hudson to do damage control. Ever the casanova, he took the student to a local McDonalds.
"He told me … not to tell anyone, which I promised to. In my eyes, I was the one who had done wrong. I was the one who had acted disgustingly," said the student.
Dear readers, I cannot emphasize this enough: For the past four years, Deal Hudson, an adulterous sexual predator working on his third marriage who advanced on a suicidal 18-year-old who had lost her faith in God, humanity, and herself, got her drunk, had reciprocal oral sex with her in his Fordham University office, and then told her to keep her mouth shut over a couple of two-for-a-dollar cheeseburgers has been George W. Bush's top religious advisor. The National Catholic Review refers to Deal Hudson as "the most influential Catholic layman in George W. Bush's Washington" and points out that "Hudson's got A-list access" to the White House. Less than three months ago, Hudson was one of nine conservative religion writers who joined Bush in the Oval Office for an interview prior to Chicken George's meeting with Pope John Paul II.
"Sexual harassment is not tolerated at Fordham University. It subverts the mission of the University and threatens the well-being, educational experiences and careers of students, faculty and staff. It is especially disturbing in the context of a teacher-student relationship."— Elizabeth Schmalz
Vice President for Public Affairs
According to the Natioinal Catholic Review, a Fordham spokesperson said Hudson "surrendered" his tenure upon being confronted by administrators. He also paid a settlement of $30,000 to terminate a lawsuit that the student brought against him on the basis of these allegations.
Religious activists such as Donahue believe Hudson's departure from Chicken George's side is going to hurt the Bush campaign's efforts with America's Catholics. "He was the ultimate networker," Donohue told the New York Times. "I think it will be hurt because of the ties that Deal had."
As one would almost sadly expect these days, Deal Hudson hardly blames himself for the actions that led to his distancing himself from Chicken George. He blames a reporter from "a liberal Catholic publication," even though it's unlikely that reporter was in the bar when Hudson wanted to show an intoxicated student his "new Deal." He casts stones at the "personal attacks" and "low-brow tactics" that now plague him, but at no point does he suggest he's sorry for his conduct in that Bronx bar a few years ago.
Thou shalt keep thy hands off the drunken co-eds, Deal.
Related article: Bush campaign adviser quits over prior sex case (San Francisco Chronicle)
Related article: The Real Deal: How a Philosophy Professor With a Checkered Past Became the Most Influential Catholic Layman in George W. Bush's Washington (National Catholic Review)