A week ago, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) was a likely successor to retiring Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) for the top leadership position in the congressional Republican caucus. Now, he’s facing calls for his resignation after allegations surfaced this week that he willfully ignored sexual abuse while an assistant wrestling coach at Ohio State University.
On Thursday, Jordan again denied those allegations and threatened his accusers with the capitol police. His press secretary released statements from the wife of one of Jordan’s former wrestlers, as well as Russ Hellickson, who was the head coach during Jordan’s time with the team, defending Jordan’s conduct.
But on Thursday afternoon, a fourth Ohio State wrestler came forward to add his voice to the growing chorus accusing Jordan of enabling sexual assault.
Shawn Dailey considers himself a close friend of Jordan’s, and described himself as a Republican. He contributed to Jordan’s first political campaign. But on Thursday, after days of Jordan denying having any knowledge about the abuse that occurred for years on his watch, Dailey corroborated the accounts of his fellow teammates.
“I participated with Jimmy [Jordan] and the other wrestlers in locker-room talk about Strauss. We all did,” Dailey told NBC News on Thursday. “It was very common knowledge in the locker room that if you went to Dr. Strauss for anything, you would have to pull your pants down.”
Dailey also revealed that he, too, was abused by team doctor Richard Strauss, who worked for the athletics department for more than two decades and is thought to have preyed on as many as 2,000 athletes across 14 different sports during the 80’s and 90’s.
“What happened drove me out of the sport,” said Dailey. “So I was surprised to hear Jim say that he knew nothing about it.” He also called Jordan’s denials of the incidents “hurtful.”
Jordan’s press secretary didn’t immediately respond to inquiries about the latest revelation.