Welcome to 2022, when a scandal isn’t an opportunity to think about any wrongdoing — but is a great chance to run for office.
William Bennett, the Marion C. Moore School teacher fired for fighting a student last August, is now running for a state House seat.
Bennett filed paperwork yesterday to run for District 25 in Elizabethtown as a Republican.
Jefferson County Public Schools fired Bennett in December, saying he had used excessive force and made disparaging comments in an interaction with a student, according to the Courier Journal. He also failed to disclose to the school that he had been previously disciplined at other teaching jobs.
LEO has reached out to Bennett for comment.
Now, what of Bennett’s actions over the years could qualify him to run for office? Is it:
- Pinning a 16-year-old JCPS student to the ground and grabbing his hair, as caught on cell phone video.
- Allegedly telling that student, Jamir Strane, before the fight, “You’re just going to be another Black boy shot,” according to Strane. (Bennett has admitted he said something about being shot that provoked Strane, who hit Bennett before being pinned.)
- Telling students at North Bullitt High School, “Feminists are modern day Nazis” and “I love the Second Amendment; take it away, I’ll shoot you,” according to a letter written by the superintendent.
- Being arrested in 2001 for breaking into his then-girlfriend’s apartment to see if she was cheating and then telling students he “wouldn’t change what he did,” according to a termination letter from Elizabethtown Independent Schools. (The charges were later dropped.)
- Shaking a student from his desk and pinning another student while working for Hardin County Schools, according to school records
Maybe it’s the fact that this hasn’t stopped Bennett running for office in the past. Bennett is a former Elizabethtown city council member.
The public reacted to the news of Bennett’s latest race on Twitter.
“Sighhhhh at this point nothing shocks me,” said Louisville activist Hannah Drake.
“C’mon Ky, don’t vote for this jerk! We’ve got enough already that need to be thrown out of office,” said @DebbyCollins99
“We need to have a very serious conversation about why the worst, least qualified among us continue to use their negative press as a springboard into running for public office,” said @seebrox.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story said that William Bennett had tripped Jamir Strane after pinning him to the ground according to the school’s investigation. The school’s investigation did not report this, but it is a claim that Strane’s family is making in a lawsuit against Bennett.