Video: Rangel stands up for the American way, or something

In case you missed this moment from the earlier live video feed, Mediaite captures this moment from Charles Rangel where he stood up for the rights of poor, indigent Congressmen to have legal counsel at ethics hearings. Absent from his rant about being denied counsel are the facts that the subcommittee holding the hearing never denied him counsel in the first place, that Rangel had months to prepare for these hearings, and that the committee had consulted with Rangel during that period on numerous occasions to advise him on how he could fund his legal defense through contributions. In the words of Boon from Animal House, “Never mind — he’s rolling”:

Subcommittee chair Zoe Lofgren later made all of these points when the hearing resumed, but by that time Rangel was long gone. Speaking of Animal House, however, it’s clear where Rangel got his defense strategy, which matches incoherence with arrogance and more than a dash of the theatrical: