An attorney for Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) cast doubt Tuesday morning on reports the congressman won’t seek reelection following a slew of sexual harassment allegations.
Arnold Reed, a Detroit-area attorney, suggested on Twitter that a younger Conyers relative was not aware of his great-uncle’s plans when he told reporters he planned to run for his Michigan congressional seat next year.
The younger relative, Ian Conyers, told the Times his great-uncle would not seek reelection due to health concerns.
“The congressman will make his decision this morning consistent with my previous statements,” Reed tweeted. “I’m not responding to rumor and innuendo regarding Ian Conyers. I have not spoken to Ian Conyers and no one is aware of the congressman’s plans except he and I and his wife.”
Conyers, the longest-serving member of Congress, has been under pressure from Democratic leaders to resign since several former staffers alleged he made inappropriate advances toward them over the past two decades. He has denied wrongdoing.
The New York Times first reported Tuesday that Ian Conyers, the grandson of Conyers’s brother, plans to run for the seat.
“He is not resigning. He is going to retire,” the younger Conyers told the paper. “His doctor advised him that the rigor of another campaign would be too much for him just in terms of his health.”
Messages left with the younger Conyers were not immediately returned Tuesday morning.
The elder Conyers is expected to announce his plans at 10 a.m. Tuesday on a Detroit-area radio program.