Wow – I’m sure Rangel didn’t expect to wake up this morning and read this:
If Rep. Charles Rangel was looking for support from President Obama, he’d better not get his hopes up.
Obama last night called the ethics charges against Rangel “very troubling” and sharply noted that the embattled Harlem Democrat is “at the end of his career.”
“I think Charlie Rangel served a very long time and served his constituents very well. But these allegations are very troubling,” Obama said on the “CBS Evening News” in his first comments on the Rangel scandal.
“He’s somebody who’s at the end of his career. Eighty years old. I’m sure that what he wants is to be able to end his career with dignity. And my hope is that it happens.”
As others are noting this morning, it sounds like Rangel is the latest political ally the President has chosen to throw under the bus in the interest of politcal expediency. Mind, I certainly would like to see Rangel exit the House stage left for good, but I’m not under any illusion about President Obama’s motivations here. This isn’t about a desire to do “what’s right” by “draining the swamp” (ha!) but instead a desire to minimize the specter of scandal in an election year.
Through an anonymous source, Rangel has made his opinion of President Obama’s statement known:
But a person close to Rangel tells POLITICO the embattled Democrat “doesn’t give a damn about what the president thinks about this” and won’t step down.
“[Obama’s] statement comes as no surprise to us,” said a person close to Rangel, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We’re not surprised by this, we’ve known the people in the White House have felt this way for a while, but this doesn’t change anything for us.”
Yes – Rangel knows that if he wants it, his seat is his for life, regardless of what types of ethics charges he faces.
And speaking of, guess who else is dealing with ethics charges of their own? Rep. Mad Maxine Waters:
WASHINGTON — Representative Maxine Waters, Democrat of California, will face charges of misusing her office and is expected to contest the claims in a House trial, the second powerful House Democrat to opt for such a public airing in recent days, Congressional officials said Friday.
A House ethics subcommittee has charged Ms. Waters, 71, a 10-term congresswoman, in a case involving communications that she had with the top executive of a bank that her husband owned stock in while it was applying for a federal bailout in 2008, two House officials said.
Charges are expected to be announced next week, several Congressional officials said, speaking only on the condition of anonymity because the proceedings remained confidential. Details of the specific accusations of wrongdoing were not available Friday evening.
The expected trial, coming just after the start of a similar proceeding on Thursday for Representative Charles B. Rangel of New York, would be a modern-day precedent for the House, Congressional officials said. At no time in at least the last two decades have two sitting House members faced a public hearing detailing allegations against them.
It would also be an embarrassment for the Congressional Black Caucus. Ms. Waters and Mr. Rangel are two of its most revered and long-standing members, and both have spent decades as key leaders in banking and financial services issues in the House.
Mikael Moore, Ms. Waters’s chief of staff, declined to comment on the case on Friday, saying that the congresswoman had not been formally notified of any action by the ethics committee.
Ms. Waters, at the time the investigation by the House ethics panel began last fall, was accused of intervening on behalf of OneUnited, a Boston-based bank. The Times reported last year that Ms. Waters called Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. in 2008, as the economy was in a free fall, to ask him to host a special meeting with executives from black-owned banks.
As a key House player on the Financial Services Committee, Ms. Waters often called Mr. Paulson. He agreed to arrange the requested meeting, The New York Times reported last year.
What Mr. Paulson did not know at the time was that Ms. Waters’s husband, Sidney Williams, owned stock in and had served on the board of OneUnited, whose chief executive turned the Treasury headquarters meeting into a special appeal for bailout assistance. The executive of the institution, one of the nation’s largest black-owned banks, asked for $50 million in federal aid, The Times reported.
Although they haven’t gone through their respective ethics trials just yet, you and I both know these two are corruptocrat extraordinaires … and what they’re both going through gives off the appearance of wrongdoing by Democrats in the House, and as we’ve learned quite well from Democrats over the years, it’s not whether or not their is evidence of wrongdoing, but the “seriousness of the charges” that matter. My, how the tables have turned.
One question: When do you think Waters and/or Rangel will pull out the race card?