Evan Bayh Remains Silent on Stories of His Father's Sexual Assault, Speaks Out Against Trump

Journalist Xeni Jardin said that Birch Bayh groped her

Evan Bayh
Evan Bayh is sworn in as Indiana secretary of state as wife Susan and father, former Indiana Sen. Birch Bayh look on / AP
October 13, 2016

Evan Bayh, the Democratic candidate for Senate in Indiana, has remained silent on allegations of sexual assault leveled against his father even as he condemns Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump for similar abuses.

Bayh's campaign said in a statement that the "stories" of Trump groping women are "horrifying." However, Bayh has yet to address recent claims made by tech blogger Xeni Jardin that she was groped by Evan's father, Birch Bayh.

In a series of tweets dated July 13, 2016, Jardin said Bayh's father, a Democrat who represented Indiana in the Senate for nearly two decades, put his hands on her in the back of a taxpayer-funded town car.

"But yeah," Jardin wrote. "Birch Bayh groped me."

Asked about the incident by MSNBC host Chris Hayes, Jardin said that she was pitching a tech startup to both Democrats and Republicans at the time.

Reached for comment by email, Jardin told the Washington Free Beacon that neither Bayh nor anybody that represents him ever reached out to her to get more information or apologize for the incident.

Jardin's claims were reported by Vox and Slate. Neither outlet was able to obtain comment from Evan Bayh on the incident (it is unclear whether Slate reached out to Bayh).

Bayh's campaign on Thursday wrote that the groping allegations against Trump should be grounds for his Republican opponent Rep. Todd Young to drop his support of Trump.

"These stories are horrifying," wrote a top aide to Bayh. "Congressman Young, after several days of political calculation, decided to continue to support Donald Trump, saying that he will speak out when he needs to speak out. Congressman Young, not only is that time past due, but Hoosiers are owed an explanation for your continued support of a candidate so flagrantly in opposition to our values."

The Bayh campaign has not responded to numerous emails from the Washington Free Beacon on why it chose to ignore Jardin's story.

Jardin said she has no reason to put blame on the younger Bayh for the incident. "Evan was not present, and bears no responsibility for what happened," Jardin said in an email.

She also said that sexual abuse is not a partisan issue.

"Sexual harassment, sexual assault, the everyday demeaning and objectification, the whole spectrum of abuse and sexism women face in America—it's a very important issue, but it is not a partisan issue," said Jardin. "Republicans are sexual abusers. So are Democrats. It's a kind of sickness, not a political ideology."