By now, you know that when Donald Trump screams “FAKE NEWS!”, he’s actually referring to any story that is even mildly critical of him. Well, it looks like some right-wingers want to extend that rule beyond the White House. They’re suggesting that there’s a conspiracy afoot against a powerful Republican congressman accused of turning a blind eye to sexual assault. To hear them talk, this story was dredged up to punish that lawmaker for trying to derail Robert Mueller’s investigation.
On Tuesday morning, NBC News detonated a bombshell. Several former wrestlers at Ohio State claimed Jim Jordan, the five-term congressman from Ohio’s 4th District, knew that late longtime team doctor Richard Strauss was molesting them during Jordan’s tenure as an assistant coach–and did absolutely nothing.
Jordan claims that he didn’t know about the abuse until former wrestlers began speaking out this spring. However, several former wrestlers say that they told Jordan numerous times that Strauss fondled them in the shower or in his office. One of them, Dunyasha Yetts, claimed that when he and his teammates told Jordan about the abuse, Jordan vowed to “kill him (Strauss) if he tried anything with him.” Another, Mike DiSibato, says he gave Jordan a heads-up that he was going public with his allegations–only to have Jordan ask him to keep his name out of it.
Yetts, DiSibato, and others believe that as the top assistant to head coach Russ Hellickson, Jordan almost certainly knew about Strauss’ debauchery. DiSibato claimed that Jordan is “absolutely lying” by pleading ignorance. Ohio State has launched an investigation. The investigators say they have called Jordan numerous times, and he hasn’t responded. Through a spokesman, Jordan denies any wrongdoing.
When right-wing comedian Tim Young saw this story, he thought its timing was rather interesting.
Young was referring to Jordan’s performance when Rosenstein appeared before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday. Watch here.
Jordan accused Rosenstein of sitting on information about Robert Mueller’s investigation. As part of the “extraordinary evidence” he tried to peddle in support of his extraordinary claim, he cited a Fox News report that claimed Rosenstein threatened to subpoena records from the House Intelligence Committee. One problem–Rosenstein’s boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, has denied this ever happened.
The tenor of Young’s “wink wink, nudge nudge” tweet was obvious–NBC’s story is a hit piece intended to gag a congressman who is pushing to stop Mueller’s “witch hunt.” Jordan is considered a hero in these circles; indeed, he is reportedly preparing to run for Speaker in 2020.
Young wasn’t the only Trump diehard peddling this conspiracy theory. Right-wing blogger Mike Tokes was of a similar mind.
Right-wing media critic Brent Bozell didn’t think it was a coincidence this cropped up with Jordan being bandied about as a possible Speaker.
Black conservative podcaster and Sandy Hook and Parkland truther Wayne Dupree went further, claiming these allegations were actually enough to justify supporting Jordan for Speaker.
It didn’t take long for deplorable Twitter to take up the cry.
We’ve heard this before. When The Washington Post uncovered Roy Moore’s alleged debauchery, his supporters claimed that it was part of a conspiracy to derail his march to the Senate. But The Post actually spent three weeks fleshing the story out.
It’s a safe bet that NBC took its time reporting this story about Jordan as well. Apparently it still hasn’t occurred to the Trump diehards that this is what news organizations are supposed to do.
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