All Articles Tagged "charles rangel"
(The Hill) – Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) said Thursday morning that government spending cuts will end up hurting African Americans disproportionately. In comments on the House floor, Rangel warned blacks would be disproportionately affected because many African-Americans have sought work in the public sector for reasons related to job security.
As Democrats and Republicans continue to argue about whether to raise the debt ceiling by August 2, Rep. Charles Rangel has offered a rather unusual means of coming to a solution. He appeared on Fox Business recently and recommended that “clergy of all faith should weigh in on the moral question” according to political tracking site Mediaite. This was in response to questions regarding Rangel’s recent comments, in which he wondered out loud “what would Jesus do” about the debt ceiling impasse. Mediaite goes on to detail his surreal conversation with Judge Andrew Napolitano on the conservative channel:
The Judge wondered about Wrangel’s use of Jesus, “is this an honest inquiry or this a political ploy?” Yet Wrangel didn’t back down, insisting that “both sides have dug into positions that politically they can’t get out of by 2012.” Therefore, he thought it necessary for everyone to take a step back and realize what is “right.”
Wrangel’s apparent request for divine intervention was evidence to the Judge that things have become so partisan and possibly hopeless in Washington. And Wrangel responded, “there’s nothing wrong with praying.” The need for prayer was a point of agreement for Wrangel and the Judge. Yet whether it was moral for the present generation to borrow from future generations and kick the debt down the road, was something not even prayer seemed to be able to resolve between the two men.
The last time I checked, we were not living in a country run by a priesthood. The separation of church and state is still in effect. No, there is nothing wrong with praying, but it is disconcerting to see a sitting member of Congress discuss religion as a means for getting Republicans and Democrats to agree on a critical issue.
Life-threatening scenarios will unfold if we do not raise the debt ceiling. Social Security and unemployment checks might be stopped. The Unites States might default on loans, further harming our struggling economy as our credit is ruined on the international level. If the federal government shuts down because no agreement is reached, the African-American community will be deeply effected, as roughly 20% of blacks are employed by the public sector.
Prayer is a wonderful thing, but getting these warring parties to reconcile and prevent these catastrophes will take cunning political maneuvering. Things I don’t remember from the bible, unless Rangel meant “What would Judas do?”
Rep Rangel: Meditate on Jesus’ preferred actions for your life in your own private time. Please use these precious moments to make some phone calls “across the aisle,” and press for a deal. Spare America from an even worse economic nightmare. Sure, Jesus would do the “right thing,” but Democrats and Republicans have widely different views of what is right.
Democrats need to stay grounded in the material world and focus on doing what works. The fact is, the debt ceiling has been raised every time it was fiscally necessary in the history of the United States, according to TheRoot.com. Not much need for prayer in this instance, if you are looking for answers. A glance at history will do.
(Wall Street Journal) — The publisher of a local New York newspaper pleaded guilty Thursday to lying to congressional investigators about who really paid for Rep. Charles Rangel to attend junkets at tropical resorts that ran afoul of House ethics rules. Karl Rodney, publisher of the New York Carib News, admitted that he submitted papers in 2007 and 2008 to congressional officials falsely claiming the Carib News Foundation was the sole sponsor of Rangel’s trips to conferences at resorts in Antigua and St. Maarten. In fact, prosecutors say, Rodney had solicited money from various corporations and the governments of Antigua and St. Maarten to help pay for the lawmaker’s trips.
When I first read the news about Representative (Rep.) Charlie Rangel filing a 2012 statement of candidacy with the Federal Elections Committee for a possible 22nd term in Congress, I initially laughed as I conjectured that the article was somehow meant as a joke. To my surprise, research indicated that the promulgation of Rep. Rangel’s filing was unequivocal and factual.
Just three months after being censured by the House and convicted of 11 charges by a House ethics panel for improper leasing, concealment of assets and other unethical practices, the thought that someone involved in such crookedness could potentially win an impending election in 2012 was significantly problematic. It certainly leads one to contemplate a plethora of questions. For example, should term limits be established for members of Congress, as well as for Supreme Court justices? Additionally, is anti-corruption reform needed at the federal level? Relative to both questions, I would humbly answer, “Yes.”
Currently, members of the United States Senate can serve an unlimited number of 6-year terms, while representatives of the United States House are allotted an unlimited number of 2-year terms. And, Supreme Court justice appointments at the federal level are for life without any term limit restrictions. As articulated by statesmen such as Thomas Jefferson, George Mason and Richard Henry Lee and existing private organizations such as U.S. Term Limits, the idea of “perpetuity in office” has been and is extremely dangerous relative to American freedom and democracy.
Of course, there are certain commentators who believe that rotation in office for Congressional members and Supreme Court justices is somehow undemocratic and would create problems due to the absence of long-term incumbents. Thus, for these incumbency proponents, the fact that Rep. John Dingel has been in office for 55 years, Senator (Sen.) Daniel Inouye for 51 years, Rep. John Conyers for 46 years and Rep. Rangel for 40 years is not problematic. Or, the fact that Supreme Court justices have an average tenure of 25.5 years and oftentimes serve at ages where their capacity to be highly efficient and productive is significantly diminished.
Term limits are absolutely essential and necessary in changing how Congress and the Supreme Court presently work. With Congress, it is relatively safe to state that a plethora of incumbent members have reached a certain status where they are more concerned with reelection than the concerns of their constituency, relationships with special-interest lobbyists, micromanagement and their seniority.
With the Supreme Court, weathered justices logically become out of touch with the popular consent of the people. Additionally, there is an unbalanced approach to appointments, where certain presidents can appoint two or three justices while other presidents choose none. This often leads to politically-biased court rulings in lieu of unbiased decisions. On the whole, carefully-derived term limits for Congress and the Supreme Court would unquestionably require prudent exercising of authority and would result in more choices for voters and competitive elections, which could potentially preclude someone like Rep. Rangel from being re-elected even after being convicted of egregious ethics violations.
Anti-corruption reform is also imperative for a better Congress and a better democracy. To be sure, President Obama has stuck to his campaign promises of attempting to make the government more accountable by signing the Presidential Memorandum on Transparency and Open Government and tightening ethics to a certain degree via the Executive Order on Ethics Commitments by Executive Branch Personnel, which explicitly places bans on lobbyist gifts and revolving doors.
Unfortunately, as evidenced by Rep. Rangel and other members of Congress who have or are being investigated by the House ethics panel, corruption appears to be relatively rampant throughout both chambers. To be sure, perversion of integrity will always be present within the context of politics; however, this inevitable truth should not permit Congressional members to continue to serve after being found guilty of ethical infractions. Whether it is Rep. Rangel, Sen. David Vitter (soliciting prostitutes), Sen. John Ensign (affair with campaign staffer), Rep. Chris Lee (“The Craigslist’s Congressman”) and the list goes on, these public officials should no longer be able to serve in Congress.
Until such public corruption provisions and other tough laws and actions (i.e., tightening conflict of interest rules, earmark reform, stringent anti-bribery laws, etc.) are put into place, we will continue to see politicians like Rep. Rangel running for office even when objective evidence indicates that they struggle with honesty and integrity.
Anthony Jerrod is a bestselling author, speaker, and public policy expert.
Well, you’ve got to admit — when Representative Charles Rangel takes a lickin’, he keeps on tickin’. Despite the recent censure by his peers for ethics violations, including not paying his taxes and improper use of his office, he plans to run for re-election in Harlem. If he wins, this will be the second time voters overlook Rangel’s missteps. Ethics charges were hanging over his head even prior to the last election.
It is not just the public whose trust he has to regain, but his former colleagues and the entire Democratic establishment – including President Obama. During the height of the scandal, the president said Rangel should “be able to end his career with dignity.”
Few may doubt Rangel’s ability to tackle the issues or effectively represent voters on the floor of Congress, but maybe it’s time for Harlem to shake things up and bring in some new, less tainted leadership. Clean slates, folks.
(Washington Post) — After it was all over – the bear hugs, the whispers, the somber theatricality – one question lingered about Charlie Rangel’s censure, and it was wider than Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard in Harlem. How did the savvy old pol let this happen? How did one of the shrewdest operatives in the House of Representatives, a man who rose to become chairman of the most powerful committee, Ways and Means, an expert in tax law and spending procedures, a hero to black America, get caught chiseling on his taxes? How did he let himself become the latest example of ethical lapses in Congress?
(Wall Street Journal) — Rep. Charles Rangel has established a defense fund that will allow supporters to contribute as much as $5,000 a year to help pay his legal bills. The New York Democrat still owes money to his former lawyers, who represented him in an ethics case that ended with his censure. The Charles B. Rangel Legal Expense Trust was approved by the House ethics committee, the same panel that successfully recommended that the House censure Mr. Rangel for financial and fund-raising misconduct. Mr. Rangel announced the establishment of the fund on Tuesday. H. Carl McCall, the former New York State comptroller, will serve as trustee. Contributions will be reported quarterly and disclosed publicly.
(Wall Street Journal) — Rep. Charles Rangel has established a defense fund that will allow supporters to contribute as much as $5,000 a year to help pay his legal bills.The New York Democrat still owes money to his former lawyers, who represented him in an ethics case that ended with his censure. The Charles B. Rangel Legal Expense Trust was approved by the House ethics committee, the same panel that successfully recommended that the House censure Mr. Rangel for financial and fund-raising misconduct. Mr. Rangel announced the establishment of the fund on Tuesday. H. Carl McCall, the former New York State comptroller, will serve as trustee. Contributions will be reported quarterly and disclosed publicly. The House voted 333-79 on Dec. 2 to censure Mr. Rangel, a punishment that required the speaker of the House to publicly read the censure resolution while the 80-year-old lawmaker stood at the front of the chamber.
Needless to say it was an interesting year, as usual. Nobody would’ve guessed that an NBA player’s decision to change teams would captivate the nation’s attention and generate so much passion. And nobody would’ve guessed how much power right-wing insane conservative commentators had until the case of a Georgia woman was hastily handled by the the White House. In case you missed it, here is a list of news and events that we’re still talking about at the end of 2010:
It was a horrible start to 2010 for Haiti. Who could forget how the capital city of Port-au-Prince was shaken and rattled by a 7.0 earthquake in January. The disaster left hundreds of thousands of islanders homeless and injured; it also killed thousands. Almost a year later, the former French colony is still struggling to restore livable conditions.
(New American Media) — Politics does, indeed, make strange bedfellows. How else to characterize one of Congress’s loudest, most outspoken ultraconservatives, Rep. Peter King of New York, protesting the House vote to censure Harlem congressman Charles Rangel, an African-American, a Democrat, and a longtime paragon of liberalism? Of course, King’s defense of Rangel had nothing to do with political affection, identification, outrage over his treatment, or even fear that the censure vote could set a dangerous precedent. No, the point was to ensure that the corruption spotlight shone brightly on the Democrats. That’s exactly what’s happened.