Rep. John Conyers' lawyer insisted Friday that the lawmaker is innocent of any sexual harassment or assault against a former female staffer, but will spend the next two days considering whether to resign or retire due to new health concerns.
"Mr. Conyers asserts that he has done nothing wrong and for some reason, the tide has turned," Arnold Reed told reporters in Detroit Friday afternoon. "He will continue to defend himself until the cows come home."
Conyers was sent to the hospital soon after sexual misconduct allegations surfaced against him. He is undergoing a second round of medical tests Friday after being hospitalized in Detroit Thursday for "stress."
Reed said the results of those tests aren't in yet, and Reed indicated they will be a factor in ongoing talks about whether he should resign. Reed said another factor is whether Conyers, 88, believes he can continue to serve effectively in Congress.
On the sexual harassment charges, Reed said he has a "plethora" of people available to defend the lawmaker and added that a former staffer, Sean Campbell, was fired for cursing at a woman who had called the office.
"Mr. Campbell indicates that he never saw anything and verified that the congressman hired the accuser's daughter, but there became a problem — all hell broke loose when the congressman fired the daughter and then all of a sudden we have the sexual harassment allegation," Reed said, reading a statement from Campbell.
According to Reed, it would not make sense for the accuser, Marion Brown, to bring her daughter to work at her office if she was in an unsafe environment.
"Because she has breached that agreement, we can now call her name," Reed said about Brown. He also detailed the $27,000 settlement Brown was paid.
On Thursday, Brown, his former deputy chief of staff from 2003 to 2014, came forward with allegations against the lawmaker.
"It was sexual harassment, violating my body, propositioning me, inviting me [to a] hotel with the guise of discussing business and then propositioning me for sex,” Brown said. “He’s just violated my body, he has touched me in different ways and it was very uncomfortable and very unprofessional.”
An hour later, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi broke her days-long loyalty to Conyers and said he should resign in light of multiple sexual harassment allegations waged against him.
"The allegations against Congressman Conyers, as we have learned more since Sunday, are serious, disappointing and very credible. It's very sad," Pelosi said during her weekly press conference Thursday morning.
"The brave women who came forward are owed justice," Pelosi added. "I pray for Congressman Conyers and his family, and wish them well. However, Congressman Conyers should resign."
Conyers' attorney has insisted his client, who happens to be the longest-serving current member of Congress, will not prematurely leave office due to these allegations or criticism from Pelosi.