It says something rather ominous about the republic that a congressman facing multiple allegations of blatant sexual harassment had to be shamed and goaded into resigning.
It says something more that the congressman, John Conyers, is all of 88 years old.
It says something further that he immediately endorsed his son to take his place.
Sadly, such a brazen familial line of succession wouldn’t be unique in Washington. Another Michigan congressional seat has been in the Dingell family for over 80 years. John Dingell Jr. served nearly 60 years after succeeding his father, after John Dingell Sr. had served 22 years.
Dingell’s wife succeeded him after he retired in 2015.
They leave scratch marks on the door jambs on the way out. If they ever leave.
This is what has been known throughout human history as a “monarchy.” And our Founders thought they’d left that behind in England.
And we wonder why Congress is increasingly imperious? This is how leaders become rulers. Conyers, even nearly 90 years of age, had to be utterly discredited before agreeing to go home. And only after his own party’s leader, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, did a political pirouette on him, following revelations of harassment even a diehard Democrat couldn’t brook.
Washington, we have a problem. And it isn’t going away just because John Conyers is.