Noah Feit, The State (Columbia, South Carolina), November 29, 2017
A flippant response the Columbia Democrat made to reporters while walking in the Capitol is drawing the ire of many.
When asked about sexual harassment allegations against colleague Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), [Repl Jim] Clyburn seemed to suggest elected officials should be held to a different standard than other public figures.
In a video posted on Twitter, the 77-year-old Clyburn is walking to an elevator with Congressional Black Caucus chairman Cedric Richmond (D-La.), when asked “Other men in other industries have faced similar accusations … and gotten out of the way, resign, stepped down, far faster than he has, right … Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose, Matt Lauer?”
Clyburn’s response, “Who elected them?”
But after 5 p.m., Clyburn posted his official statement regarding a House Resolution that read very differently than the flippant response to reporters in the halls of the Capitol.
“As elected officials, we ought to be held to a higher standard,” Clyburn said in his statement. “Congress must review and improve the current administrative procedure for victims to come forward. All harassment and discrimination allegations must be taken seriously.”
Many comments critical of Clyburn have been posted on social media. Among them, people are questioning his logic, asking him to resign – in delicate and powerful terms – and calling him a poor representative of South Carolina.
“Enacting this legislation ought to be a first step toward affirming with one voice that there is absolutely no place for discrimination nor harassment of any kind in the halls of Congress.”