Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

House ethics panel: lawmaker violated rules

House ethics panel: lawmaker violated rules

A House ethics panel has found a long-serving Democratic lawmaker guilty on 11 counts of breaking House rules, dealing a jarring blow to his career.
The ethics committee will next conduct a hearing on the appropriate punishment Rep. Charles Rangel, a once-powerful committee chairman who oversaw tax and trade policy. The ethics committee will then make a recommendation to the House.
The conviction of the silver-haired Rangel is an embarrassment for Democrats who are still reeling from losing their majority in the House to Republicans in the Nov. 2 election.
Possible punishments include a House vote deploring Rangel's conduct, a fine and denial of privileges.
Rangel, a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus, is not expected to resign. He is 80 years old and remains a dominant political figure in New York's famed Harlem neighborhood that he has represented for 40 years. He won re-election earlier this month.
He was forced to step down last March as Ways and Means chairman when the House ethics committee, in a separate case, admonished him for taking two Caribbean trips paid for by corporations.
At his one-day trial on Monday, Rangel was reduced to pleading for a postponement _ arguing that his lawyers abandoned him after he paid them some $2 million but could afford no more. The panel rejected his request, and Rangel walked out of the proceeding.
He was not present Tuesday when the verdict was announced.
The congressional panel, sitting as a jury and deliberating over two days, found that Rangel had used House stationery and staff to solicit money for a New York college center named after him. It also concluded he solicited donors for the center with interests before his Ways and Means Committee, leaving the impression the money could influence official actions.
He also was found guilty of failing to disclose at least $600,000 in assets and income in a series of inaccurate reports to Congress; using a rent-subsidized New York apartment for a campaign office, when it was designated for residential use; and failure to report to the IRS rental income from a housing unit in a Dominican Republic resort.


Updated : 2021-10-19 23:46 GMT+08:00