Charlie Rangel, the Congressional Black Caucus and ‘Free’ Elections
Charlie Rangel, convicted of 11 ethics violations – the most ever found against any member of Congress – was resoundingly re-elected Nov. 2, getting 80 percent of his district’s vote. After 40 years representing these folks, you can’t conclude he was an unknown commodity. Granted, the conviction occurred after the election, but the charges were well-publicized.
Has Charlie Rangel’s leadership produced life so grand in Harlem that flagrant and persistent unethical behavior by their congressman means nothing to its residents?
The national poverty rate is around 14 percent. In the 15th District of New York, Charlie Rangel’s district, it’s 24.3 percent. The child poverty rate is 30.9 percent.
Whatever it is that Harlem voters find so attractive about Mr. Rangel, it’s hard to conclude that quality of life is something they feel they owe to him.