Dec. 01, 2017
Best of the States
AP staffers get exclusive interview with U.S. Rep. John Conyers
When BuzzFeed broke the news that the longest-serving current U.S. House member had settled a sexual harassment complaint, one notable thing missing was comment from U.S. Rep. John Conyers himself. The 88-year-old Conyers rarely gives interviews anymore, deferring to his staff to issue statements or simply not responding.
Congress was on Thanksgiving break, but News Editor Roger Schneider suggested that video journalist Mike Householder and reporter Corey Williams drop by Conyers’ Detroit home. They knew it was a long shot – Corey and Mike had been to Conyers’ house before, and knew it was gated.
To their surprise, Conyers answered their ring.
Conyers answered a few questions, giving Williams and Householder a major beat: He denied settling sexual harassment claims and other allegations of inappropriate touching of staffers.
For aggressive reporting that paid off with an exclusive on one of the week’s top stories, Williams and Householder share this week’s Best of the States prize.