House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has now called for Rep. John Conyers, a 26-year incumbent from district in Detroit, to step down from the House. The call stems from numerous allegations of sexual harassment that have been levied against Conyers in recent days, as well as the possibility that Conyers may have paid out at least one settlement to a prior accuser. Pelosi had walked her self into a corner in recent days by stopping short of calling for resignation, but clearly the political winds have shifted in just 48 hours.
Politico has the scoop:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called on Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) to resign in the face of multiple sexual harassment allegations against the 88-year-old lawmaker.
“I pray for Congressman Conyers and his family and wish them well,” Pelosi told reporters. “However, Congressman Conyers should resign.”
Conyers left Washington on Tuesday following a meeting with Congressional Black Caucus members about his future. He has been hospitalized in Detroit with stress-related problems, according to Detroit TV stations.
The Associated Press also confirms the report:
BREAKING: Top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi says Michigan Rep. John Conyers, facing sexual misconduct allegations, should resign.
— The Associated Press (@AP) November 30, 2017
According to Local 4 in Detroit, a Conyers political adviser blamed the “media assault” for the Congressment’s current hospital stay:
“I just spoke with Monica Conyers on the phone and we want you to know that the congressman is resting comfortably in an area hospital. He’s doing OK, as well as he can be expected for a gentleman that’s approaching 90 years of age,” Riddle said. “The congressman’s health is not what it should be and lot of that is directly attributable to this media assault.”
Blaming the media for asking the questions about your behavior is probably a bad move. Democrats are constantly accusing President Trump of doing just that, yet here we are in familiar place.
Conyers hails from a district that votes 90% Democrat so there is/was no danger of his seat going Republican. However, it appears that the weight of carrying him to the midterms would have diluted any message Democrats could muster regarding the possible election of Roy Moore in the US Senate.
Conyers had previously announced he would not seek re-election in 2018, but now it appears that his colleagues are pushing him to exit his position much sooner.