Theodore's World: Panel Admonishes Rangel for Taking Trips as Gifts

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February 26, 2010

Panel Admonishes Rangel for Taking Trips as Gifts

Panel Admonishes Rangel for Taking Trips as Gifts

The New York Times

A House panel found today that Democratic leader Charlie Rangel broke the rules by failing to properly disclose financial details of a trip to the Caribbean.

A House panel has found that Rep. Charles B. Rangel of New York broke Congressional rules by failing to properly disclose financial details of a trip to the Caribbean, a House official said.

But the ethics panel, the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, did not issue findings in its continuing inquiries into more serious matters concerning Mr. Rangel’s fund-raising, his failure to pay federal taxes on rental income from a Dominican villa, and his use of four rent-stabilized apartments provided by a Manhattan real estate developer.

The committee’s findings, released Thursday night, admonished Mr. Rangel, even though it said it had no proof that he knew of the sponsorships. But it held him accountable because two members of his staff knew.

“Representative Rangel was responsible for the knowledge and actions of his staff and the performance of their official duties,” the report said.

Mr. Rangel, in a news conference Thursday night, disputed the findings. “Common sense dictates that members of Congress should not be held responsible for what could be the wrongdoing or mistakes or errors of staff unless there is reason to believe the members knew or should have known,” he said.

Mr. Rangel, who heads the House Ways and Means committee and who has served his Harlem district for nearly four decades, has been under investigation by two house subcommittees.

The guilty finding led to quick condemnation from Republicans, who have made the powerful congressman a frequent target.

“Once promised to be the ‘most ethical Congress in history,’ the Democratic majority now has a serious ethics scandal on its hands thanks in-part to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi,” said Ken Spain, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. “For months, and even years, Nancy Pelosi has been promoting corrupt actors within her caucus ranks when she should have been punishing them.”

Rangel did not take questions at the news conference and did not respond to a question about whether he would step down from his committee post. There was no immediate reaction from the House Democratic leadership about the report. But the ethics finding comes at an important moment for Democrats, since they are trying to push ahead with their stalled health care measure and Mr. Rangel’s committee would play a central role in the final process.

Rangel's not the only Democrat facing ethical questions.:

Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi
Rep. Pete Visclosky of Indiana and top aide
Charles Brimmer
Sen. Max Baucus
Sen. Roland Burris of Illinois was recently admonished by the Senate Ethics Committee


Wild Thing's comment.......

Yesterday you could kind of tell something was up about Rangel and that Obama knew something today when Rangel stood up and Obama kind of ignored him. ( under the bus)

So What are they going to do???? I can tell you in one word, NOTHING! He’s a Democrat, but I do suspect a way harsh censure or reprimand will come down from on high.

OH dear , no they wouldn't would they? Do you think they actually might, well you know, go for the ultimate punishment of having Obama write a stern letter to him. LOL

Posted by Wild Thing at February 26, 2010 04:48 AM


I don't expect anything but a brief verbal 'intercourse' then it's back to business as usual. The Congressional Progressive Caucus holds Congress and Rangel is high up in the Congressional Black Progressive Congress, they are mutually exclusive when it comes to censuring their own.

Posted by: Jack at February 26, 2010 11:30 AM

But Jack, what does the Congressional White Caucus have to say about this racist crook?

Posted by: Eddie (Enemy of the State) at February 26, 2010 12:40 PM

So Rangel gets called a "naughty boy". That will be about the extent of it. Hardly a slap. Rangel will continue on with his crimes.

Posted by: TomR at February 26, 2010 01:24 PM

Ha Eddie, it's racist for the Congressional White Caucus to even mention that one of the 'brothers' is a corpulent, corrupt, crooked mo fo, plus if he loses his perks it affects theirs. Turn out the lights and they are all alike :) :)

Posted by: Jack at February 26, 2010 02:27 PM

Ditto all you all said. My gosh they have a person, Rangle and is totally guilty. It is sickening how they always get away with what they do. GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

Posted by: Wild Thing at February 27, 2010 03:54 AM