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John Conyers has stepped down as Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee


Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) stepped down from his position as the top Democrat and ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee on Sunday amid accusations that he sexually harassed a former member of his staff.

"After careful consideration and in light of the attention drawn by recent allegations made against me, I have notified the Democratic Leader of my request to step aside as Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee during the investigation of these matters," said Conyer in a statement released Sunday.

The Michigan congressman's office confirmed paying the staffer a settlement of $27,000. The staffer said that the reason she was fired from her position was that she had repeatedly rebuffed Conyers' sexual advances.

The representative said that the payment was a severance package, but denied that it had anything to do with claims of sexual harassment.

The House Ethics Committee is investigating Conyers after receiving said allegations of sexual harassment and age discrimination as well as using "official resources for impermissible personal purposes." Conyers has said he would fully cooperate.

This is a developing story. Check back for more details. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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