Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) threw her support behind Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) to become the next House Speaker—while claiming that she didn’t know anything about the Ohio State sex abuse scandal that occurred while Jordan was the assistant wrestling coach.
“I know you’ve been outspoken about defending victims of sexual assault, do the past allegations against Jim Jordan that he turned a blind eye to sexual abuse give you reservations?” Face The Nation host Margaret Brennan asked on Sunday.
“Yeah, I’m not familiar or aware with that, he’s not indicted on anything that I’m aware of and so I don’t know anything, I can’t speak to that,” Mace replied.
In 2020, six former wrestlers alleged that Jordan was aware of team doctor Richard Strauss’ abuse and did not act.
One ex-wrestler said he brought the issue to Jordan directly, who replied, “‘I have nothing to do with this.'”
Strauss, who was found by an independent report commissioned by the school to have “sexually abused at least 177 male student-patients” between 1979 and 1998 died by suicide in 2005. Jordan has repeatedly denied knowing anything about the abuse.
When Brennan then clarified that she was talking about the Ohio State scandal, Mace replied, “I don’t know anything about that” before adding that she’s been “a very strong voice for women” and advocate for rape victims.
During the interview, Mace also said she doesn’t know much about the allegations of sexual misconduct that Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) has faced.
A Justice Department investigation into allegations of sex trafficking by Gaetz was dropped in February without charges. However, the Florida Republican still faces a House Ethic Committee inquiry into allegations of sexual misconduct and misuse of funds.
“Again, he’s not indicted for anything,” Mace said. “I don’t know much about it … and I’m not on the Ethics Committee and I don’t know what they have, I haven’t seen it.”
Mace’s remarks come amid an intensified battle for the House speakership, following Gaetz’s ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.). Currently, the race is between Jordan and Scalise, the House Majority Leader, though Rep. Kevin Hern (R-Okla.) is also expected to throw his hat in the ring as well.