Rep. John Conyers Retiring or Resigning? Either Way He’s Leaving Office Today
The longest serving member of the US House of Representatives is vacating his office today amid sexual harassment allegations and health related issues. However, there seems to be a dispute about whether he's retiring or resigning.
Democrat John Conyers, now 88, has been a Michigan representative for more than 50 years but has heard growing calls for his resignation following an investigative report from Buzzfeed that found multiple allegations of sexual harassment, along with a settlement with a former staffer regarding similar allegations:
Conyers settled a wrongful dismissal complaint in 2015 that alleged years of sexual harassment, including requests for sex acts from staff and inappropriate comments and touching, according to documents obtained and published by BuzzFeed News last month.
On Monday, another report surfaced, Fox News reported:
The most recent accusations surfaced Monday and allege Conyers slid his hand up a woman’s skirt and rubbed her thighs while they sat next to each other in church during a service more than a decade ago.
Conyers was also recently hospitalized with chest pains.
Tuesday, he appeared on a Detroit-area radio show where he said, ''I'm retiring today.''
Conyers said his legacy would "absolutely not" be tarnished by the sexual harassment allegations against him. "My legacy can’t be compromised or diminished in any way by what we’re going through now," he said. "This too shall pass."
During the interview, Conyers endorsed his son John Conyers III to replace him in Congress, saying: "I want you to know that my legacy will continue through my children. I have a great family here. And especially in my oldest boy John Conyers III, who incidentally I endorse to replace me in my seat in Congress."
Buzzfeed also characterizes his exit as resignation. Conyers' attorney took to Twitter to clarify the effective date, again calling it retirement, which was quickly criticized: