Right-wing Ohio Republican Congressman Jim Jordan’s sexual abuse scandal is getting even worse for him and it could cost him a seat in Congress and his party control of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Jordan has been accused of being aware that a team doctor was sexually abusing athletes while he was a wrestling coach at the Ohio State University (OSU). He is also accused of overlooking the charges and trying to cover them up instead of putting a stop to it. Although Jordan is not accused of any abuse himself, several former OSU athletes have said that Jordan of covered up the team doctor’s abuse.
“If Rep. Jordan knew that wrestlers at Ohio State were being sexually abused and did nothing, he is at some level liable for the abuse the victims endured. It is Jim Jordan’s word against several witnesses, and if they are telling the truth, Jordan’s political career should be finished.”
Jim Jordan keeps saying that he didn’t know anything about the sexual abuse, but credible news outlets have reported that former members of the team he coached are willing to testify under oath that they informed Jordan of the abuse.
Now it appears that there is new evidence proving Jordan is lying, and he may be in even more trouble than we thought.
The new evidence is coming directly from officials of the University. According to the Columbus Dispatch newspaper, attorneys representing OSU say that they contacted Jordan via phone AND EMAIL while the scandal was being investigated internally:
“Lawyers hired by OSU to probe the allegations said Jordan was contacted — both by phone and email — to request an interview, but he never responded. And three members of the wrestling team under Jordan insist that he knew about the abuse but looked the other way.”
The bad news for Jordan is that OSU and/or its attorneys need only produce copies of the emails it sent to Jordan to prove Jordan is both a liar AND complicit in the coverup of illegal sexual abuse. If they do that he is in deep, deep trouble.
He may deny receiving the emails, or may say that he didn’t read them, but that is unlikely since they came from his employer’s legal department.
If there is proof that Jordan did in fact know about the scandal at the time and did nothing about it he may face criminal and civil liability. At the very least he’ll be tied up in court for a very long time and have to pay a fortune in attorney fees.
And, if there are OSU emails, along with testimony from former athletes, it will without question prove him guilty in the court of public opinion and be a political disaster for him and his party.
He may ultimately decide to resign from Congress. Jordan’s GOP allies in Congress may force him to resign in order to try to stop this scandal from really blowing up and costing the party more lost House seats in November.
The scandal is sending shockwaves through Washington and Ohio politics, and yesterday Jordan’s Democratic opponent, Janet Garrett, began speaking up about it also. Here is a statement from her official website:
“Any allegation of sexual abuse—or complicity regarding such abuse—is very serious. That damage cannot be undone. For any teacher, protecting kids is the absolute first priority—and I say that as a former kindergarten teacher. Ohio State has an obligation to get to the bottom of this with a thorough and fair investigation. Jim Jordan has an obligation to cooperate fully with that investigation.”
She also used her Twitter account to document Jordan’s numerous other failings. Her underdog campaign is now really picking up steam.
As it stands, Jordan’s scandal is getting uglier by the hour. He is one of Donald Trump’s strongest and most vocal supporters in the U.S. House of Representatives. With just four short months until the midterm elections, this disaster could not have come at a worse time for Jordan and for the Republican Party.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.