WASHINGTON ― Staunch conservative Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) is in the spotlight after launching a bid for the speaker’s gavel this week, a race that is sure to provide even more drama and chaos than the unprecedented ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).
But one critical aspect of Jordan’s history that has been omitted by most Beltway publications is the prominent role he played in spreading lies about the 2020 election and rallying supporters to contest the results. The extraordinary effort led by former President Donald Trump, who has endorsed Jordan’s bid for speaker, led to the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.
“Jim Jordan knew more about what Donald Trump had planned for Jan. 6 than any other member of the House of Representatives,” former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), who co-chaired the House Select Committee tasked with investigating the insurrection, said in a speech at the University of Minnesota this week.
“Jim Jordan was involved, was part of the conspiracy in which Donald Trump was engaged as he attempted to overturn the election,” she added.
Jordan, who now chairs the House Judiciary Committee, refused to cooperate with the select committee regarding his communications with Trump as the attack was occurring, defying subpoenas for testimony.
Trump spoke on the phone with Jordan for 10 minutes on the morning of Jan. 6. Jordan has never divulged the nature of the conversation, saying only that he had spoken to Trump “a number of times” that day.
He has said he had “nothing to do with” the attack on the Capitol.
Jordan also phoned then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows while the attack was underway, according to former Meadows aide Cassidy Hutchinson.
“They had a brief conversation,” Hutchinson told the committee. “In crossfire, I heard briefly what they were talking about. I heard conversations in the Oval [Office] dining room at that point talking about the ‘Hang Mike Pence’ chants.”
Jordan also sent a text to Meadows on Jan. 5 outlining a legal theory that then-Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the Senate chamber on Jan. 6, had the authority to block the certification of Joe Biden’s 2020 election win.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who is running for House speaker, was actively involved in spreading falsehoods about the 2020 presidential election.
Jordan was also actively involved in spreading falsehoods about the 2020 presidential election before and after it had taken place, baselessly alleging fraud had occurred in the battleground states of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia. Many of his false claims were aired again and again in repeated appearances on Fox News.
In October, the month before the election, Jordan claimed that Democrats “are trying to steal the election, after the election.” He appeared at a “Stop the Steal” rally in Pennsylvania after the state had already been called for Biden, urging supporters to keep up the pressure.
In the days leading up to Jan. 6, Jordan urged Republicans to “unite and fight for President Trump” by objecting to the certification of the 2020 election in Congress.
“He has fought for us, the American people. … It’s time for us to fight for him and the Constitution,” Jordan said in an interview with Newsmax.
Trump, the front-runner for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, on Thursday lauded Jordan for his college wrestling career and his education credentials. Trump wrote in a post to his Truth Social platform that Jordan “has my complete & total endorsement” in the race for House speaker.
Six former wrestlers alleged that Jordan as an assistant coach knew about an Ohio State University doctor who had been molesting student-athletes. Jordan has denied any knowledge of the abuse.
House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) is also running for the speaker job. Both he and Jordan are expected to make their case to the entire House GOP conference in a closed-door forum next week.