Rep. Jordan Denies Ignoring Sexual Abuse As Wrestling Coach: ‘I Never Knew’

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July 4, 2018 9:38 a.m.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) is adamantly denying allegations that he knew—and intentionally overlooked—that the doctor for Ohio State’s wrestling team was sexually abusing students when Jordan served as the team’s assistant coach from 1986 to 1994.

“It’s not true,” Jordan told Politico in a Tuesday night interview. “I never knew about any type of abuse. If I did, I would have done something about it. And look, if there are people who are abused, then that’s terrible and we want justice to happen.”

Three former Ohio State wrestlers went public in a lengthy NBC News exposé, describing rampant physical molestation by Dr. Richard Strauss. The accusers said that Jordan and other university officials knew that Strauss showered with the students and inappropriately touched them during examinations.

Dunyasha Yetts, one of the former wrestlers, told NBC he directly spoke to Jordan about an incident where Strauss pulled his pants down.

Jordan, a co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus who hopes to become speaker or minority leader, told Politico that he’s not worried that the scandal could affect his political future.

“We’ve got the truth on our side,” he said.

Ohio State is investigating the allegations against Strauss, who died in 2015. A law firm conducting that probe told the Washington Post that Jordan did not respond to emails or calls seeking an interview with him. Jordan told Politico his staff had not found records of any such inquiries.

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