Without acknowledging any short-comings by himself or his aides, Mr. Hastert said he took responsibility for the matter.
Note that Mike even correctly predicted the cliche:
While he stopped short of issuing a direct apology Thursday, saying that he was not aware of the extent of Mr. Foley’s inappropriate behavior toward pages, Mr. Hastert did declare, “The buck stops here.”
And of course that makes it all better:
Hours later, President Bush called Mr. Hastert to offer his support, thanking him for “taking responsibility and for saying that the House leadership is accountable.”
Nick Burbules of PBD sums it up:
Shorter Denny Hastert: I accept complete responsibility, but no blame. I’m deeply sorry, but I didn’t do anything wrong. The buck stops here, but it isn’t my fault.
The good news is that this time it isn’t going to work. The more the GOP and its journalistic collaborators try to defend Hastert, the worse they wind up looking.