Published: Wed, December 06, 2017
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Embattled Michigan Rep. John Conyers announces retirement

Embattled Michigan Rep. John Conyers announces retirement

Now facing multiple allegations of sexual harassment, veteran Congressman Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., announced he is retiring today.

In an amended statement released to 7 Action News last week, Conyers said, "I expressly and vehemently denied the allegations made against me, and continue to do so. He is going to retire, ' Conyers" great-nephew Ian, a MI state senator, told the New York Times, adding that he planned to run for the seat in Congress himself, suggesting Conyers would step down at the end of his term and won't seek reelection.

- Prominent clergy, Detroit elected leaders and community activists said Monday that they will go to the White House and U.S. House of Representatives - if necessary - to demand due process for Rep. John Conyers who faces allegations of sexual harassment from several women who once worked for him.

The decision sets up a battle within the Conyers family for his Detroit-area House seat.

FILE - In this May 24, 2016, file photo, Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington during a hearing. Another woman alleges she was sacked by Conyers after she rejected his advances and subsequently settled a wrongful dismissal claim with the congressman.

She also said that she saw Conyers touching and stroking the legs and buttocks of Brown and other female staffers on "multiple occasions".

"My legacy can't be compromised or diminished in any way by what we are going through now", Conyers said. "This too shall pass", he said, speaking on the Mildred Gaddis Show. "And I want to be able to talk about it and fix the system without having people say 'Blake, you benefited from the system".

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The speaker didn't make the same call for Farenthold, R-Texas, who reportedly used $84,000 from a little-known congressional account to settle a sexual harassment claim by a former staffer.

John Conyers returned to Detroit from Washington last week and was hospitalized on Wednesday after complaining that he felt light-headed. Until Tuesday, he was the longest-serving current member of Congress. Other local media also reported the plans, citing sources close to Conyers. Another woman accused Conyers of sexual misconduct just days later.

A number of fellow Democrats have called on Conyers to resign, including Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and fellow Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee.

"I think there should be a complete disclosure and revealing to all the citizens in the country what federal legislatures are doing or not doing - and any cost that may have incurred as a result of that", Conyers said.

The House Ethics Committee is investigating allegations of harassment and inappropriate touching by women who once worked for Conyers, including claims by Marion Brown who could testify later this week before the committee.

Word of Conyers' resignation was met with sadness among House Democrats, even though many had called on him to step down.

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