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DeSantis, Gaetz to campaign with Freedom Caucus founder Jim Jordan

Jordan wants to be House speaker.
Photo from Ron DeSantis' campaign mailer.
Photo from Ron DeSantis' campaign mailer.
Published Aug. 13, 2018|Updated Aug. 13, 2018

Florida's top two Trump supporters in Congress will campaign Saturday alongside Rep. Jim Jordan, who is making a push to be House speaker.

Rep. Matt Gaetz, who is running for re-election, and Rep. Ron DeSantis, the Trump-backed candidate for governor, will make three stops in the Panhandle: Pensacola, Navarre and Destin.

They're calling it the Freedom Tour.

Jordan has been embroiled in a controversy over whether he knew about sexual abuse of Ohio State wrestlers by a team doctor while he was an assistant coach there years ago. Jordan denies knowing anything.

Last week, former wrestler Mark Coleman told CNN he no longer stands by his previous statement that Jordan must have known.

"I was angry and said words that I shouldn't have said," Coleman told CNN. "He may have known about some locker room banter because we did joke about it in the locker room, but I don't know of anyone ever reporting it to Jim Jordan directly."

"I'm clarifying (the earlier statement) because it's been on my mind for a long time and I feel guilty that this happened, and I wanted to clarify it," Coleman told the network. "Not change it. I said what I said."

In order to become speaker, Jordan's GOP must hold the House in November and then he would have to contend with other, more high profile contenders.

"I think it would great. I think all the lobbyists would be quaking in their boots if Jim Jordan was speaker," DeSantis said recently. "The swamp would immediately start to drain. … Jim would bring change to fight for taxpayer and fight the swamp."