Rangel condemned Chavez? BFD.

There are several posts out there in the blogosphere praising Rep. Charlie Rangel’s remarks in response to Venezeulan dictator Hugo Chavez’s insane speech before the UN yesterday (see video of Rangel’s remarks here). First, I want to post Rangel’s statement, and then my commentary will follow:

I want to express my extreme displeasure with statements by the President of Venezuela attacking U.S. President George Bush in such a personal and disparaging way during his remarks at the United Nations General Assembly.

It should be clear to all heads of government that criticism of Bush Administration policies, either domestic or foreign, does not entitle them to attack the President personally.

George Bush is the President of the United States and represents the entire country. Any demeaning public attack against him is viewed by Republicans and Democrats, and all Americans, as an attack on all of us.

I feel that I must speak out now since the Venezuelan government has been instrumental in providing oil at discounted prices to people in low income communities who have suffered increases in rent as heating oil prices have risen sharply. By offering this benefit to people in need, Venezuela has won many friends in poor communities of New York and other states. I am surprised that American oil companies have not stepped up to provide that kind of assistance to the poor.

Venezuela’s generosity to the poor, however, should not be interpreted as license to attack President Bush. Those who take issue with Bush Administration policies have no right to attack him personally. It was not helpful when President Bush referred to certain nations as an “axis of evil.” Neither is it helpful for a head of state to use the sacred halls of the United Nations to insult President Bush.

(Hat tip: Stop The ACLU)

With all due respect to my fellow conservatives who have praised Rangel’s remarks, please don’t fall for his tough talk. As Allah points out in his post, and as I’ve blogged about here before, Rangel is the same guy who insulted the President back in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina by calling him the black community’s “Bull Connor.” Not only that, he’s equated the war in Iraq to the Holocaust, also said last year that VP Cheney’s heart condition and age might have made him “too sick” to do his job, and accused American troops of deliberately targeting civilians on Hannity and Colmes (scroll – I don’t have a direct link, but I watched the show).

Insults about “his” President and “his” country don’t concern Charlie Rangel one bit – he’s just pissed that Chavez got off a few lines he wished he himself had been clever enough to use already.

Update I: Pelosi has condemned Chavez’s remarks as well. Tomorrow she’ll be back to accusing the President and the rest of the admin of committing various nefarious deeds throughout his time as President. These people are a laugh a minute.

Update II: Chavez repeated the same ‘devil’ remarks today in Harlem. What say ye, Rangel? Isn’t that your home turf?

Update III: Can’t access the article just now (their server is probably jammed up from hits), but Drudge has up the following link: Harkin defends Venezuelan President’s UN speech against Bush. Ian at HotAir was apparently able to access the site and has a quote from the article:

Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, a democrat, today defended Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s United Nations speech in which Chavez called President George Bush the devil. Harkin said the comments were “incendiary”, then went on to say, “Let me put it this way, I can understand the frustration, ah, and the anger of certain people around the world because of George Bush’s policies.” Harkin continued what has been frequent criticism of the president’s foreign policy.

Read more via Anchoress, Blog For All, Amy Proctor (scroll), SuperFun Power Hour

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