Senators call for probe into US Olympic Committee, USA Gymnastics after abuse scandal

Senators call for probe into US Olympic Committee, USA Gymnastics after abuse scandal
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Sens. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstGrassley pressured to run as Democrats set sights on Iowa Republicans focus tax hike opposition on capital gains change Biden signs bill to bolster crime victims fund MORE (R-Iowa) and Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenEquilibrium/ Sustainability — Presented by NextEra Energy — Clean power repurposes dirty power CIA watchdog to review handling of 'Havana syndrome' cases Frustration builds as infrastructure talks drag MORE (D-N.H.) are expected to introduce a resolution Wednesday in the Senate to create a panel that would investigate how officials handled complaints of abuse by Larry Nassar, CNN reported.

The special committee would look into how the U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics addressed allegations against Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics doctor who abused dozens of girls and women.

“There are many disturbing questions that remain unanswered as to how Larry Nassar was able to freely abuse young girls for decades,” Shaheen said in a statement to CNN.

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“Because the US Olympic Committee operates under a federal charter and its athletes compete under the American flag, the Senate has a responsibility to deliver answers and accountability,” she added.

Shaheen wrote a letter last month to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGrassley pressured to run as Democrats set sights on Iowa House Democrats grow frustrated as they feel ignored by Senate Democrats question GOP shift on vaccines MORE (R-Ky.) calling for the select committee's formation.

Nassar was sentenced last month to 40 to 175 years in prison for sexually abusing more than 150 young female athletes while working for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University. 

A total of 156 victims testified prior to his sentencing that Nassar abused them when they sought treatment for sports injuries.

Ernst and Shaheen last week called for U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun to resign following reports that the committee knew of complaints against Nassar but did not act on them.

The entire board of directors for USA Gymnastics resigned after the scandal broke, and multiple Michigan State University administrators stepped down after several students testified that Nassar assaulted them while he worked for the school.

Congress passed a bill late last month that obligates athletic organizations to swiftly report sexual abuse allegations and establish preventative policies.