The scandal about what Republican Congressman Jim Jordan may have known about ongoing sexual assault during his time as an assistant wrestling coach at Ohio State University keeps growing.
This week, an eighth former OSU wrestler came forward to claim that Jordan not only knew about allegations that physician Dr. Richard Strauss had been sexually assaulting team members, but that he’d “just snickered” when the player had told Jordan the doctor had “held my balls longer than normal.”
Strauss was never charged for the alleged abuse, and died in 2005. In April, Ohio State University announced an investigation into the accusations. And while Jordan has not himself been accused of committing any assault, a growing chorus of his former wrestlers claim he not only knew what was going on, but did not act to protect them from what they claim was ongoing, and widely acknowledged abuse at the hands of their team doctor. Jordan has vehemently denied any wrongdoing.
“He’s sitting here and directly lying,” the latest accuser, who spoke anonymously with CNN, said.
Jordan’s allies, meanwhile, have begun circling the wagon around their increasingly radioactive associate. Some claim that he is a victim of the same “deep state” boogymen supposedly aiming to topple the Trump administration. On Wednesday, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan described Jordan as a “man of integrity,” while his ultra-conservative Freedom Caucus colleagues offered him “100 percent” support.
Perhaps least surprising is the support offered to Jordan by Donald Trump, himself an admitted sexual predator, who said, “I don’t believe them at all,” when asked about Jordan’s growing list of accusers.
Following Tuesday’s 8th accuser, however, Jordan appeared to be letting the pressure of persistent and credible allegations of sexual misconduct get to him. On Wednesday, he demonstrated a less-than-iron-clad grasp of the machinations of investigative journalism:
Sorry, Jim—that’s not desperation, that’s how reporting works.