Ohio Republican Representative Jim Jordan was harshly criticized after he posted a tweet declaring a story about a 10-year-old girl who was raped in Ohio and had to seek an abortion in a neighboring state was "another lie" then deleted after the rapist was officially charged by authorities.
Jordan has not apologized for his false claim and has avoided questions about the offensive tweet. However, he did acknowledge the rapist "should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
You can see the tweet, which was screenshot and shared by Capitol Hill journalist Taylor Popielarz, below.
The account of a 10-year-old girl who was raped and forced to leave her home state of Ohio for an abortion first garnered national attention after Democratic President Joe Biden mentioned it during a major speech about abortion policy shortly after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision that once protected a person's right to choose reproductive healthcare without excessive government restriction.
In Ohio, there are no exceptions that would qualify a person for an abortion—not even in cases of rape of incest—and the draconian nature of these laws is what prompted the 10-year-old and her family to cross state lines to get the procedure.
Jordan's initial tweet quoted a story about Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost's office initially saying it was unaware of the case even though it would not have been made public record until charges were filed by the local authorities.
State Attorney Generals do not typically investigate or prosecute local crimes.
However, Jordan moved quickly to delete the tweet after local police arrested Columbus resident Gerson Fuentes, 27, after he confessed to raping the child on at least two occasions. Fuentes has been charged with first-degree rape, a felony in the state.
Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Cynthia Ebner ordered Fuentes be held in the Franklin County jail on $2 million bond, noting that he is a potential flight risk.
Many have criticized Jordan following this development.
More than a few brought up Jordan's history of minimizing and ignoring sex crimes occurring under his nose.
Jordan was accused of failing to report or stop serial sexual abuse in regard to his alleged actions during his tenure as an assistant wrestling coach with Ohio State University's wrestling program.
Jordan, who worked for the university between 1987 and 1995, was criticized by former wrestlers who said he was aware of, but did not respond to allegations of sexual misconduct by former wrestling team physician Richard Strauss, who died by suicide in 2005.
Jordan refused to cooperate with investigations into Strauss and described his accusers as "pawns in a political plot" even while facing legal action in response to his denials.
These facts emerged once again as people took Jordan to task for his offensive tweet.
When asked about his tweet, Jordan declined the opportunity to make amends to the victim and her family.
Ohio Republican Attorney General Yost released a statement shortly after Fuentes' arrest saying "We rejoice anytime a child rapist is taken off the streets," later adding he is "absolutely delighted that this monster has been taken off the street. If convicted, he should spend the rest of his life in prison."
However, Yost also cast doubt on the story in an attempt to discredit Democratic President Joe Biden, telling Fox News his office had not heard "a whisper" of a report about a 10-year-old rape victim.
He later told the USA TODAY Network Ohio bureau, one day before Fuentes was charged, he was "not saying it could not have happened" but that "there is not a damn scintilla of evidence."
Yost—like Jordan—has also not apologized to the victim, their family or the local authorities they maligned with their comments.