WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Donald Trump plans to put Ohio’s Rep. Jim Jordan in the same league as civil rights icon Martin Luther King, Jr., Mother Teresa of Calcutta, and boxing great Muhammad Ali by awarding him the nation’s highest civilian honor: the Medal of Freedom.
The Washington Post on Sunday reported that Trump intends to give the award established by President John F. Kennedy to two of his most vocal Republican defenders in Congress: Jordan, R-Urbana, and U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, of California. According to the White House, the award is bestowed by the president on individuals who have made exceptional contributions to world peace, culture, U.S. national interests, or “other significant public or private endeavors.”
In past years, Trump gave the medal to figures including golfer Tiger Woods, basketball great Bob Cousy and quarterback Roger Staubach and made posthumous awards to baseball great Babe Ruth, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and rock-and-roll star Elvis Presley.
Jordan and Nunes vigorously argued Trump’s case during the House Intelligence Committee’s 2019 hearings on whether Trump should be impeached for asking Ukraine’s new president to investigate President-elect Joe Biden and his son in exchange for releasing foreign aid. The Democrat-controlled House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump on charges of abusing his power and obstructing Congress, but the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate voted to acquit him.
Jordan, whose district includes Allen County, called the impeachment process “unfair,” “dangerous” and “harmful to our country” in a 2019 House of Representatives floor speech that urged Trump’s acquittal.
“Democrats have never accepted the will of the American people … the 63 million folks who voted for this guy and made him president in an Electoral College landslide,” Jordan said. “They’ve never accepted that fact. We are less than 11 months away from the election. Let the American people decide who should be president.”
After Biden won the 2020 election, Jordan joined a group of Republicans who pledged to challenge the results when Congress meets Wednesday to count and certify Electoral College votes. Jordan also attended rallies in Pennsylvania to claim the election was being “stolen” from Trump and signed onto a Supreme Court brief to back a lawsuit that Texas filed to throw out election results from Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia. Those results helped Biden clinch the election with 306 electoral votes to 232 for Trump. The Supreme Court rejected that case, and courts have tossed out dozens of other Trump-backed lawsuits to overturn the election results.