DETROIT (AP) — An attorney for Michigan Rep. John Conyers said on Friday that the congressman will discuss in the next few days whether to resign following allegations of sexual misconduct, but his health will be the paramount factor and not pressure from Washington politicians.
Arnold Reed told a news conference Friday that he will be meeting with doctors to assess the medical prognosis for the 88-year-old Conyers following a second round of medical tests. Conyers has been hospitalized since Wednesday evening. No details about his condition have been released.
"We will discuss in the next day or so what Mr. Conyers plans to do. As you know his health is not the best. It's not what it should be," Reed said. "It will be Congressman John Conyers who decides what it is he is going to do."
Reed told reporters that he had not spoken Conyers in two days, allowing his client to rest.
Multiple women have accused Conyers of sexual misconduct including inappropriate touching and harassment.
Striking a defiant tone, Reed stressed that Conyers denies he sexually-harassed anyone.
A number of fellow Democrats have called on Conyers to resign, including Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and fellow Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee. Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan has also urged Conyers to step down.
The House Ethics Committee has been reviewing the allegations against Conyers, who is the longest-serving current member of the House. He has stepped aside from his post as ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
The accusations against Conyers are part of a wave of allegations against titans of entertainment, media and sports since the explosive reports of sexual misconduct by Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein.
A Nov. 20 BuzzFeed report said that Conyers' office paid a woman more than $27,000 under a confidential agreement to settle a complaint in 2015 that she was fired from his Washington staff because she rejected his advances. Marion Brown has since publicly alleged that Conyers propositioned her for sex multiple times over more than a decade.
Brown is preparing to testify sometime next week before the House Ethics Committee, her attorney, Lisa Bloom told The Associated Press Friday.
"We hope it will take place next week in an open forum," Bloom said of the hearing.
Another former staff member, Deanna Maher, who ran a Michigan office for Conyers from 1997 to 2005, accused Conyers of sexual misconduct including partially undressing in front of her and feeling her legs in a vehicle.
A former scheduler alleged sexual harassment, retaliation and a hostile work environment in a February 2017 proposed complaint, but took no further action after a judge refused to file it under seal.
Brown, 61, worked for Conyers in a variety of capacities from 2003 until 2014, mostly in the Detroit district office. Brown said she kept the job partly because she had four children in college.
But Reed questioned why the women continued to work for Conyers if he harassed them and said that a number of other people around the congressman saw a positive interaction between Conyers and the women.
He especially attacked Brown's credibility, called her an "opportunist." Reed held up a photo of Conyers with Brown taken in 2011 at an event for attorneys in the Detroit area. He also said that Brown asked Conyers to hire her daughter and he did.
"When you bring your daughter into a situation that you describe that is completely hell, it is fundamentally incongruous with anything that resembles logic and truth," Reed said.
He showed reporters a photo of Conyers and Brown standing next to each and smiling for the camera around six years ago at an annual attorney's ball in the Detroit area.
Bloom responded: "I'm not going to debate the facts of this case with Mr. Conyers' attorney in the media."
The body of a man was found near a burned Ramona home Sunday after a resident of the home was unaccounted for after flames fully engulfed the structure on Saturday, authorities said. Deputies couldn't immediately say if the man who was found was the unaccounted-for resident.
The latest storm to hit San Diego is making for a beautiful scene in our local mountains with plenty of fresh snow that brought out lots of visitors this weekend.
Professional football is back in San Diego for the first time in more than two years. The San Diego Fleet's first ever home game against the Atlanta Legends got underway Sunday evening at SDCCU stadium.
The San Diego County Women's Hall of Fame will induct five local women for their life's achievements next month, the organization announced Sunday.
San Diego police on Saturday released the names of the SWAT officers involved in a shooting and a standoff in Paradise Hills early on Valentine's Day.
Following a series of low pressures, a stronger, colder system on Sunday will bring a chance of snow to San Diego mountains.
The U.S. Navy commissioned its newest combat ship on Saturday, the USS Tulsa, which eventually will be docked in San Diego.
More than 150 current and former service members and their families gathered on the USS Midway on Saturday morning.
Dozens of people on Saturday fell victim to a brunch scam that was supposed to take place at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.