OXON HILL, MD, UNITED STATES - 2018/02/23: Representative Jim Jordan (R), Representative for Ohio's 4th congressional district, at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) sponsored by the American Conservative Union held at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in Oxon Hill. Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images
Republicans rally behind Jordan amid controversy
02:52 - Source: CNN
Washington CNN  — 

Republican Rep. Jim Jordan said Wednesday he had been interviewed in the investigation at Ohio State University into alleged abuse by an OSU team doctor.

In an interview with the “The Bob Frantz Authority” radio show, the Ohio Republican said he told the investigators handling the probe “the same thing we’ve told everyone in a public way” during his interview Monday and praised the lawyer he sat down with this week for handling their interview, he believes, in the “proper way.”

“I was interviewed by the folks doing the outside investigation for Ohio State, the folks at Perkins Coie,” Jordan said Wednesday. “I thought that the lawyer who did that handled it the proper way and we told him the same thing we’ve told everyone in a public way.”

The investigation, which was launched in April, is to look into alleged abuse by the team doctor Richard Strauss, who died in 2005. The Ohio congressman is facing allegations that he turned a blind eye to Ohio State University wrestlers’ allegations of sexual abuse. Jordan has repeatedly denied any knowledge of inappropriate behavior during his time as assistant wrestling coach at OSU between 1987 and 1995.

A Jordan spokesperson also told CNN Jordan met with investigators Monday morning in Ohio. As of now, no follow-up meeting has been arranged or requested.

Jordan said in the interview that the new lawsuits that have been brought this week against OSU, saying they will “work their way through the court” and continues to defend himself, saying he did not know about abuse.

“I think the truth is coming out – all kinds of coaches, all kinds of former student athletes, all kinds of guys who wrestled for us – have said the same thing I’ve said and the reason they’ve said this is because it’s the truth,” he said. “No one reported anything to us. If they had, if we’d a known – knew about, seen, heard or had reported to us, we’d a dealt with it but nobody did, so look now there’s as you said a couple lawsuits and those will work their way through the court.”

GOP House members have largely defended Jordan, who is an influential Republican and co-founder of the conservative House Freedom Caucus.

Last week, the Freedom Caucus voted to officially back him amid the allegations, which signaled a solid bloc of support for Jordan from his most ardent followers in the Republican conference.

House Speaker Paul Ryan spoke out in defense of Jordan last week, as well.

“Jim Jordan is a friend of mine,” the Wisconsin Republican said at a news conference on Capitol Hill. “We haven’t always agreed with each other over the years. But I always have known Jim Jordan to be a man of honesty, and a man of integrity.”

Ryan shot down the idea that the House Ethics Committee would investigate Jordan, as has been floated, saying that the Ethics Committee typically investigates things that have happened while members are in Congress, not things that happened decades ago and before they were members.

Jordan is among the high-profile House Republicans considering a run to replace Ryan when he retires at the end of his term.

Jordan on Wednesday continued to question the political motivations of these allegations coming out now against him and vowed to stay “focused” on his work in Congress.

“Maybe they are coming after us so hard because (we) are actually getting some things done for the American people and doing what we told the American voters we were going to do,” Jordan said. “So in that way, I guess as is par for the course, I guess this is how the left operates, this is how people who are in the establishment I think operate but we are going to keep fighting.”