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BUSTED: Duggar family’s homeschool program sued for sexually abusing minors

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The Institute in Basic Life Principles, (IBLP) the homeschooling program used by the Duggar family, was accused of covering up sexual assault against underage girls in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday, the Washington Post reported.

The five plaintiffs, identified as Charis Barker, Rachel Frost, Rachel Lees, Gretchen Wilkinson and one Jane Doe, are each seeking $50,000 in damages, saying they were “at times minors” when they were subjected to the abuse and “inappropriate touching” during their association with the group.

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While the institute is named as a defendant in the suit, founder and former director Bill Gothard, who was placed on “indefinite administrative leave” last year after being accused of sexually harassing and abusing employees, was not. Despite being cleared in an internal investigation by the group — which the lawsuit described as a “sham” — Gothard is not allowed to hold any sort of counseling or leadership role within the institute.

Despite not being named in the suit, Gothard is accused of abusive actions against the victims, who were as young as 13 or 14 years old when they took place. The women’s attorney, David Gibbs III, said Gothard would offer counseling to them at the IBLP’s home office in Oak Brook, Illinois. He would then touch the victims inappropriately when they were alone, or in the back seat of the car if Gothard used a driver.

Gothard or other institute officials, Gibbs said, would “call the parents and share with them all the allegations of abuse that were shared in counseling, and then send the children back into those environments” if one of his victims rejected him.

The suit also accuses IBLP staff and supervisors of failing to notify Children & Family Services officials in Illinois despite receiving frequent reports of abusive activity, which violates state law.

The institute counts reality stars Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar as members, and its homeschooling teachings were depicted in the family’s show, 19 Kids and Counting. One of the Duggars’ sons, Josh, was sent to an IBLP facility after admitting to molesting several of his sisters when he was a teenager, a revelation that led to the show being taken off the air.

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The Chicago Tribune reported that besides seeking damages, the suit also calls for a “constructive trust” to be imposed upon the organization. That way, the suit said, IBLP can not liquidate its assets, valued at more than $100 million, as it shutters its Illinois office, where the alleged abuse took place, and moves its operations to Texas.


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A conservative group’s push to unseat incumbent GOP senators is infuriating Trump and his allies: report

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Although The Lincoln Project is a right-wing group, it is not only hoping for former Vice President Joe Biden to defeat President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, but also, is trying to help Democrats achieve a majority in the U.S. Senate. The group’s viewpoint is that Trump has been so toxic for the Republican Party and the conservative movement that a Democratic tsunami is needed in order to rid the GOP of Trumpism. And reporters Jonathan Easley and Max Greenwood, in an article published by The Hill on August 11, stress that the group’s push for a Democratic Senate is really getting under the skin of Trump and his supporters.

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Republican drops out of congressional race after he’s arrested for domestic violence

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Connecticut Republican candidate for the Second Congressional District, Thomas Gilmer, has officially dropped out of the race after he was arrested Monday, reported The Day.

Gilmer, who is now out on $5,000 bond, was charged with first-degree unlawful restraint and second-degree strangulation of his former girlfriend.

“Now I find myself in a position where I must put my family and our shared Republican values before my own interests," Gilmer wrote. “I cannot in good conscience move forward in this campaign while I am simultaneously forced to clear my name. And clear my name I will.”

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2020 Election

GOP senators are ‘getting the heat’ after McConnell punts on COVID relief package: report

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President Donald Trump circumvented Congress by signing executive orders that offered a limited extension of enhanced unemployment benefits -- but that may not be enough for some vulnerable incumbent Republicans who are in tough re-election battles.

NBC News reports that "Republican Senate incumbents are getting the heat" after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) decided to punt on negotiating with House Democrats over an economic relief package for Americans who have lost their jobs or are facing evictions during a pandemic that has killed more than 163,000 Americans.

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