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Rangel Returns to Raising Funds in DC

Now that Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y) managed to successfully dispatch a crowded field of challengers in his Harlem, N.Y. Democratic primary yesterday, he’s finding out who’s still his friend in Washington this morning over breakfast.

The fundraiser breakfast at Bistro Bis in downtown DC might be the first time, reports the Sunlight Foundation’s Party Time blog, that Rangel has attempted raising funds in Washington since March, when he was forced to step down as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee on account of the ongoing ethics investigation into his congressional dealings:

Last year, he planned to attend numerous fundraisers for himself and his colleagues. Also, some longtime donors, including Pfizer, have said they are no longer contributing to him while other lawmakers have donated the money Rangel gave their campaigns to charity.

Indeed, in the lead up to the Ethics Committee’s announcement before the August recess of the charges against Rangel, a whole host of Democratic lawmakers began donating the campaign funds they had received from Rangel’s PAC to charities in order to avoid being tarred by Republicans for accepting potentially dirty money.

As a result, it will be interesting to monitor who showed up this morning to contribute, as well as what Rangel plans to do with the money. With his own district looking relatively secure now that he’s gotten past the hurdle of his primary, and other lawmakers hesitant to accept his largess, it’s not immediately clear for whom or what, exactly, Rangel is even engaged in raising funds in the first place.

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