Abject sycophant Jim Jordan can’t lie his way out of Jan. 6 role
Jim Jordan is a bad liar. The Ohio congressman can’t pull off deceit like the Dear Leader of the MAGA cult. The diminutive Jordan is wont to stammer, backtrack, draw a blank, deny, admit, or squirm like a trapped weasel. Not a good look for Ohio’s 4th U.S. Congressional District Republican who fancies himself a firebrand in shirt sleeves owning the libs. But the former wrestling champ who came to Congress to brawl — not improve lives through constructive legislating — may well lose a looming takedown by the truth.
Jordan is a small-town opportunist who got a taste of fame as the darling of the Tea Party movement and saw scorched earth theatrics as his ticket to the top. Constituents in his gerrymandered district could count on their representative to rail on cue for the television cameras — and nothing else. Jordan’s histrionics shifted into high gear when a voracious cable TV addict occupied the Oval Office. The Urbana Republican shrewdly tailored his tantrums for an audience of one.
For his abject sycophancy, Jordan was singled out by the most powerful man on earth at rallies and heralded as a MAGA prince. It was heady recognition for an otherwise unremarkable politician. His fierce allegiance to the Dear Leader elevated his profile far beyond the 4th District and Jordan became infamous on the national stage. He would not be deterred in his pursuit of greater glory even after the 2020 election was called for a new president. Not even to defend the peaceful transfer of power central to democracy.
Instead, Jordan prostrated himself at the altar of fascism in service to a sore loser. He plotted to overturn the will of millions of fellow Americans based on a lie spread by the aforementioned loser. When the seditious strategies of fellow plotters failed to seize unearned power for the imperious leader, Jordan spun into character and voted to reject the certified outcome of a free and fair election — because, as he ranted pointlessly, it didn’t make sense. That’s it. Jordan’s preferred candidate simply could not have lost, according to him. It was instinctive, if not factual. Compare the size of campaign rallies, he charged. Surely that showed something was wrong with the results.
Even the bloodthirsty rampage of insurrectionists, who trashed the U.S. Capitol, battered police and hunted down lawmakers prepared to formalize President-elect Biden’s victory, didn’t give the congressman pause. That is the true measure of a little man who put personal gain over principle hours after a MAGA mob stormed the institution, he was privileged to serve in, hyped up on violence and vengeance. As evidence mounts of Jordan’s direct involvement in the attempted coup of our government, the MAGA Muppet is furiously tap dancing around incriminating text messages, confirmed meetings leading up to Jan. 6 and conversations with the seditionist-in-chief the day of — all aimed at subverting the Constitution Jordan swore to support and defend.
The Ohio right-winger is up to his neck in the unforgivable attack on our Capitol. He didn’t just amplify the baseless falsehoods of a “stolen election” at every opportunity to stoke MAGA rage until it exploded on Jan. 6. Jordan also worked zealously behind the scenes to steal a decided election for a megalomaniac who lost it fair and square. He advanced plans to scrap the people’s choice and install the loser by having the vice-president simply discard electoral votes Republicans disapproved of. It was a sinister ploy to mortally wound our democratic republic. And almost did.
Still, Jordan doubled down on his underhanded betrayal, by reverting to form and lashing out against those investigating the heinous assault on our democracy. We’ve seen this indignation act before with the Republican sell-out, remember? Jordan was implicated in the Ohio State scandal with credible evidence that nailed him for turning a blind eye toward the serial sexual assault of OSU students under his charge as a wrestling coach. The ongoing abuse, said former students, was so widespread and so well known, it was impossible for Jordan not to have known during his eight years at the school.
Yet Jordan not only denied any knowledge about the scores of college athletes abused by the school’s sports doctor, he also accused the victims of having personal vendettas against him and reportedly pressured one to recant his story lest it hurt the congressman’s career. Today, the same congressman accuses Democrats of being obsessed with Jan. 6 to conduct a protracted “witch hunt” against the twice-impeached disgraced president who sparked an insurrection against his own government.
Again, Jordan denied having any “relevant information” about the Capitol attack and refused to share knowledge of the barbaric event, even if he had it, because the bipartisan Select Committee was just out to get Jan. 6 plotters-turned-blameless bystanders like himself. He decried “the Democrats’ incessant focus on partisan investigations” and declared “the American people deserve better.”
He’s absolutely right. We do deserve better than diversions and denials from a bad liar who, by his own admission, aided and abetted the attempted steal of an election. Jordan recently basked in a standing ovation — inspired by the MAGA myth of massive election fraud in 2020 he helped perpetuate — rather than disavow what he knows is a lie. The Artful Dodger, whose notoriety is rooted in down and dirty deception that supersedes oath to country or actual public service, wants desperately to wrestle an escape from culpability.
But he’s no match for the truth.
Marilou Johanek is a veteran Ohio print and broadcast journalist who has covered state and national politics as a longtime newspaper editorial writer and columnist.
This commentary was republished from the Ohio Capital Journal under a Creative Commons license.