Ex-Ethics Czar Requests Probe Of Rep. Jordan’s Abuse Ignorance Claims

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, a key member and founder of the conservative Freedom Caucus, arrives for a TV interview at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, March 23, 2017, as the GOP's long-promised legislation to repeal and replace "Obamacare" comes to a showdown vote. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Former ethics czar Norm Eisen and president of nonprofit Democracy 21 Fred Wertheimer filed a request Monday with the Office of Congressional Ethics to launch an investigation into Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).

The probe would center on allegations that Jordan knew about and ignored rampant sexual abuse while he was an assistant coach for Ohio State University’s wrestling team, and Jordan’s recent assertions that he knew nothing about it.

“There is a direct and irreconcilable conflict between the public statements made by seven former Ohio State student wrestlers that Rep. Jordan knew wrestling team members were being sexually abused by the team doctor, and Rep. Jordan’s denial that he had any knowledge of the abuses,” they write in the letter. “This is a very serious matter that directly reflects on the integrity of the House of Representatives as an institution and on the credibility of its Members.”

They add that if the OCE finds evidence that Jordan has lied about his knowledge and failed to protect his wrestlers, the office should recommend that the House Ethics Committee take up the investigation.

“If it is determined that Rep. Jordan is lying to cover up his failure to protect student wrestlers under his supervision from sexual abuses, the House must hold Rep. Jordan accountable for his lies,” they conclude.

Seven former Ohio State University wrestlers are now accusing Jordan of lying about his ignorance of the sexual abuse many wrestlers suffered at the hands of team doctor Richard Strauss. Strauss committed suicide in 2005 and the university has since opened up an investigation.

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