Breaking: Rangel convicted on 11 of 13 counts

posted at 12:54 pm on November 16, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

It didn’t take long for Otter’s defense to flop, either.  The House subcommittee probing charges of ethics violations by Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) convicted him on 11 of the 13 counts in their allegations:

A House ethics panel has convicted Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) on 11 of 13 counts of violating House ethics rules.

Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), the chairwoman of the adjudicatory subcommittee and the full House ethics committee, announced the decision late Tuesday morning following an abbreviated public trial of the 20-term lawmaker and less than a day of closed-door deliberations.

“We have tried to act with fairness, led only by the facts and the law,” Lofgren said. “We believe we have accomplished that mission.”

The panel will recommend a punishment, then the full ethics panel will have to convene a sanctions hearing to decide whether to agree to the recommended punishment or determine another one. Serious sanctions — including formal reprimand, censure or expulsion — require a vote on the House floor. Expulsion requires a two-thirds vote, while a reprimand, which Rangel refused to agree to in July, or a censure would need just a simple majority.

There probably won’t be much drama to the conclusion.  The Ethics Committee investigation only recommended a reprimand from the outset.  That’s the equivalent of a harshly-worded memo, which carries no other penalties at all.   A censure is a reprimand read aloud while the defendant stands in the well of the House, which basically means a harshly-worded memo and a YouTube that will live forever.

The only real penalty would be expulsion, and don’t think for a moment that Rangel’s allies will allow that to happen.  It’s too bad, really, because as his constituents demonstrated two weeks ago, that’s the only way Rangel will ever leave Congress.

Update: Jazz Shaw made the same prediction in a PJM column this morning.

Update II: One commenter suggested that censure requires stripping the defendant of committee chairmanships and assignments, but that’s not a formal rule.  Each party can decide internally how to punish a censured member, as a CRS report on the subject states, and that may include stripping them of assignments — but it’s not a formal consequence, and is decided on a case-by-case basis.

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Comment pages: 1 2

Good one from Bryan Preston:

Rangel’s Moral Authority Card.

INC on November 16, 2010 at 2:20 PM

Rangel Found Innocent of Both Charges

/mfm

The Mega Independent on November 16, 2010 at 2:23 PM

It’s too bad, really, because as his constituents demonstrated two weeks ago, that’s the only way Rangel will ever leave Congress.

Doesn’t speak too highly of his constituency, does it?

repvoter on November 16, 2010 at 2:26 PM

Refuse to seat him in the next congress, just as Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. wasn’t seated.

CatoRenasci on November 16, 2010 at 2:27 PM

…that’s the only way Rangel will ever leave Congress.

Well, that’s not quite true. At 80 years of age, Mr. Rangel is likely to face the “ultimate recall campaign” pretty darn soon. He’s already outlived his life expectancy age after all and he’s living on those ‘bonus years’ (some call them ‘borrowed time’) with which those who beat the odds are favoured.

Don’t fear the reaper, Charlie. Don’t fear the reaper.

Cheers

MH

martin.hale on November 16, 2010 at 2:28 PM

Actually, I don’t give a sh%t what the Ethics Committee decides by way of ‘punishment’ for Charlie R.

I want to know why this useless POS is not in prison. If you or I had pulled off any of the stunts Rangel did to hide his income from the IRS – we’d be behind bars for years.

Let’s barrage Mrs. Pelosi with this question: Have you recommended this piece of crap be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and if not – why not? Have you met with Eric Holder to insist the DOJ indict this god%amn criminal? If not, why not????

alwyr on November 16, 2010 at 2:31 PM

This:

Expulsion should be the most lenient of the choices. A rad hose beating would be more appropriate.

Syd B. on November 16, 2010 at 1:46 PM

gary4205 on November 16, 2010 at 2:36 PM

Now what?

Nothing. Business as usual.

mankai on November 16, 2010 at 2:51 PM

I want to know why this useless POS is not in prison. If you or I had pulled off any of the stunts Rangel did to hide his income from the IRS – we’d be behind bars for years.

Because they exempt themselves from the rules, the laws and from ethical conduct generally. He will bluster a bit, colleagues will go “tsk, tsk” and then it will be business as usual and they will vote themselves more perks at our expense.

clnurnberg on November 16, 2010 at 2:51 PM

He should be tried for crimes not ethics. Hearings are a farce.

lilium on November 16, 2010 at 2:51 PM

Nothing will happen.

ThePrez on November 16, 2010 at 2:51 PM

What’s next?

Create a new leadership position for him?

paul1149 on November 16, 2010 at 2:57 PM

pathetic

Alden Pyle on November 16, 2010 at 3:12 PM

this is low hanging fruit.

wait until Issa gets Holder in there….

prizes.

ted c on November 16, 2010 at 1:34 PM
Yeah, at best he loses his job and goes around making seven figures as a government consultant and giving speeches at liberal colleges. Not to mention the obligatory book deal he’d get worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Not ranting at you, just letting my inner cynic take control for a little while…

catmman on November 16, 2010 at 1:39 PM

Don’t worry.
As there is a God, he will pay for his crimes eventually, one way or another.
I swear, from what I’ve seen in my life, it seems as if the really bad awful people always seem to be the ones doing well & making it.
Perhaps that’s just my class envy shining through.

Badger40 on November 16, 2010 at 3:12 PM

Nancy Pelosi’s squalid swamp will embrace this lying cheat, of course. Dems don’t see corruption as a bug – for them it’s a feature.

disa on November 16, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Another kabuki theater farce. He’s been found guilty? So Effing what…

The worst thing that will happen to this douchebag is he’ll be censured then go about his criminal business as usual. He should be behind bars, but he will play the race card and the Holder/Obama justice dept. will turn a blind eye.

THAT’S WHAT IT IS LIKE TO BE RULED BY A BLACK MAN /spit/

Kuffar on November 16, 2010 at 3:35 PM

Come on. He’s a democrat. Wrist meet slap… life goes on as usual.

Claypigeon on November 16, 2010 at 3:53 PM

So they’re not going to execute him, that’s what you’re really saying.

(sigh)

Merovign on November 16, 2010 at 4:10 PM

Rangel likes Caribbean beaches on the taxpayer dime.

Send him to Gitmo.

viking01 on November 16, 2010 at 4:18 PM

11 of 13 counts

Higher!

Shy Guy on November 16, 2010 at 4:32 PM

Rangel likes Caribbean beaches on the taxpayer dime.

Send him to Gitmo.

viking01 on November 16, 2010 at 4:18 PM

It will cost us even more!

Shy Guy on November 16, 2010 at 4:34 PM

If we can hold off till the Next Congress then we will have the votes to kick him out of Congress

hawkman on November 16, 2010 at 12:59 PM

..why do you think these Dem butt-wipes are working so feverishly now to the exclusion of dealing with the Bush tax cuts?

This clown’ll get off with zippoid and we’ll have a huge chunk of withholding come out of our paychecks starting next January.

“..It’s good to be the king!”

The War Planner on November 16, 2010 at 4:47 PM

Wet noodle flogging.

ronsfi on November 16, 2010 at 4:49 PM

Charlie Rangle convicted. Next up….Maxine Waters!

milwife88 on November 16, 2010 at 4:49 PM

As there is a God, he will pay for his crimes eventually, one way or another.

Badger40 on November 16, 2010 at 3:12 PM

There’s a hot spot reserved for him next to John Murtha and Uncle Teddy.

infidel4life on November 16, 2010 at 5:05 PM

Geesh, our lawmakers can break all the rules with impunity. What the hell good does a censure or reprimand do anyway when you have brain dead constituents that will re-elect you even with a youtube showing that you chopped your own mother’s head off? This guy will never be held really accountable for anything.

karenhasfreedom on November 16, 2010 at 5:16 PM

Anybody else wonder how someone making $175,000/year and has to maintain residences in NYC and DC can afford a villa anywhere?

Jim708 on November 16, 2010 at 5:17 PM

No wonder congress is so corrupt. There are no serious consequences for violating ethics.

Just like California; if I ever decide to off someone, I’ll be sure to do it there. A slap on the wrist compared to my state of Texas.

carbon_footprint on November 16, 2010 at 5:41 PM

Of course, the bottom line is, and the obvious question must be asked, if it hasn’t been asked here already, does the Congress, any one there, have the balls to prosecute him for his crimes? Just stripping of committee seats is nothing. Orange suit time…any of us commoners would be doin’ time for what he’s done.

Roger Brown on November 16, 2010 at 10:35 PM

As I have said in the past, nothing will happen to Charlie “Mind your G#dd@^^n business” Rangel. He will still be in charge of the “Ethics” Panel, even though he has none….

Vntnrse on November 17, 2010 at 12:17 AM

So, if *I* were to evade paying taxes on a $600,000 vacation property, all I’d have to do is stand in front of a committee and bluster for a few hours, right?

Sounds fantastic! Except I don’t have $600k to spend on a second home… maybe I can pass a law that says the government has to give me one?

Jewels on November 17, 2010 at 11:05 AM

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