House Panel Finds Rangel Violated Ethics Rules
A House investigative panel has charged Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) with multiple ethics violations, reports The Associated Press. The case will now be sent to another ethics panel that will try the violations. The AP adds:
Sources said the committee and Rangel’s attorney attempted unsuccessfully to negotiate a settlement to end the case. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private discussions. A settlement would have required Rangel to agree that he violated ethics rules.
Rangel announced he was running for re-election in June, despite losing his chairmanship in March because of ethics allegations that he accepted corporate-sponsored trips to the Caribbean, did not report rental income on a Dominican villa and used several rent-stabilized apartments in Manhattan. Nevertheless, he is still extremely popular in his Upper Manhattan district, routinely winning elections with around 90 percent of the vote. Nationally, Republicans view him as a symbol of corruption, and this widely circulated picture of him on a beach in the Dominican Republic only reinforces that perception.
Rangel faces several primary challengers, including — in an ironic twist — State Assemblyman Adam Clayton Powell IV, whose father was defeated in the Democratic primary in 1970 by Rangel because of an ethics scandal.
Rangel compared himself to Muhammad Ali to The New York Times in June, saying, “This is not the time to be hanging up the gloves.” But just as Republican congressional scandals hurt the party in 2006, Rangel’s charges could have the same effect come November.