Deliciously, GOP Rep. Jim Jordan's problems and accusations that he was well aware of sexual abuse taking place with members of the Ohio State wrestling team by the team physician. Now, seven of the former wrestlers have stated that Jordan had to know what was happening and merely looked away rather than protect the team's members. All of this is coming out as Jordan, a reactionary, anti-gay, anti-woman Republican had been maneuvering to succeed the toxic Paul Ryan as speaker of the House of Representatives. With luck, the growing scandal will derail Jordan's efforts and, with more luck, force him from office. Jordan embodies so much of what is wrong with today's Republican Party. Here are excerpts from the Washington Post:
A seventh former Ohio State University wrestler said Saturday that he believes Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) knew about inappropriate behavior that allegedly took place in the school’s athletic department three decades ago, as two more former team members came to Jordan’s defense.David Range, who wrestled for Ohio State in the late 1980s, said Jordan had to have known about alleged sexual misconduct by Richard Strauss, an athletic doctor whose behavior is under investigation by the school, because it happened regularly to team members and people talked about it.
“Jordan definitely knew that these things were happening — yes, most definitely,” Range told The Washington Post. “It was there. He knew about it because it was an everyday occurrence.”
Range said he never discussed the issue directly with Jordan one on one and did not know whether anyone made a formal report, but he said Jordan was present during group conversations in the locker room about Strauss’s behavior.
“We talked about it all the time in the locker room” while Jordan was there, he said.
Range said Strauss, who has been accused of abusing athletes in more than a dozen sports during his time as an athletic doctor, touched wrestlers inappropriately during examinations and ogled them in the locker room showers.
Jordan has been under scrutiny since July 3, when NBC News quoted three former wrestlers saying he knew or must have known about inappropriate behavior in the athletic department. Three others have said the same in news accounts since then.
The reports come at a delicate time for Jordan, who has been under pressure from conservative political organizations to mount a bid to replace Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), who will not run for reelection.
Asked for comment for this story, a spokesman for Jordan referred The Post to his interview with Fox News on Friday night.
Michael Alf, who joined the team in the late 1980s, said the environment in the Ohio State locker room was “definitely disturbing,” with non-team members using the showers to ogle the wrestlers.
“There was definitely inappropriate things that in my opinion were pretty disgusting going on all around us. You just took your shower and got out,” he said.