The sister of Mike Durant, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, said he’s in denial about her allegations of sexual abuse involving her father.
In an on-camera interview with Alabama Political Reporter, Mary Ryan said she was speaking out to tell her “side of the story.”
You can see the complete interview here.
“In these podcasts and interviews (Durant) is doing he is painting me in a completely untrue light. If he’s going to throw me under the bus to get votes, that’s not OK and I need to tell the truth about what’s actually gone on. Otherwise I could care less about his career,” Ryan said.
“It’s very common in incest families to turn on the victim,” Ryan told APR. “That’s not unusual at all. Sometimes, denial and shame beat out love.”
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Durant’s campaign did not respond to AL.com’s request for comment.
Spokesperson Scott Stone told APR, however, that the candidate has “never attacked his sister.”
“This is just another desperate attempt to smear Mike’s character, like the Fake News did to President Trump, with outlandish lies that have no basis in fact because the political insiders know that Mike will be beholden to no one but the people of Alabama,” Stone said.
In a 1994 lawsuit, Mary said the pair’s father, Leon, molested her from the time she was a child until she was a teenager. According to published reports, Durant confront his father, who confessed and Durant wrote letters to his sister telling her he was sorry for what happened. Later, however, Mary said Durant denied the claims and turned his back on her.
The stories reemerged last year when Durant announced his plans to run for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate to replace the retiring Richard Shelby. Recent polling shows ‘Durant slipping into third place in a close race with Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, and Katie Britt, former president and CEO of the Business Council of Alabama.