Friday, July 30, 2010

GOP Demonized by AP for Rep. Rangel’s Ethics Probe – Rangel Faces Republican Opponent, Reverend Michael Faulkner in 2010

Reverand Michael Falkner Challenger to Rangel in 2010 - image the right

Charles Rangel, the Representative from New York’s 15th District, was charged yesterday with 13 violations of the U.S. Congressional Ethics Standards. Rangel, who is up for reelection this year,will face Conservative Reverend Michael Faulkner in November. Faulkner is characterized as the “lone Republican” in the race against Rangel, who must first get past two Democrat opponents in the New York State Primary, September 14th.

Rangel was charged by a bi-partisan panel – made up of equal members of both political parties. Ethics investigations into congressional members is nothing new, and carries little weight in most cases (specifically cases involving high profile Democrats – See Massachusetts Representative, Barney Frank, who was “reprimanded” by the House in 1990 and has enjoyed a considerably lucrative career ever since.) Therefore, a member of Congress who has done something not quite above board (in Rangel’s case it is tax evasion for the most part), faces the stiff penalty of being chastised by his peers.

How much this may factor into an election is unknown, as it appears that those Democrats, who have faced charges, have continued to retain their seats as well as lofty committee positions, as soon as they are “forgiven” by their peers. For the most part, the press appears to cover the cases, but with a bit of ho-hum, nothing to see here, move along attitude.

Not so with the AP, who is fighting back for Rangel. An article released this morning by the AP entitled “GOP Gets Wish: Rangel Case in Campaign Season” makes it appear as if the GOP engineered the probe against Rangel, and brought it conveniently to a trail during the election season. The fact that Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House and friend to Rangel, was forced to pull Rangel’s Ways and Means Committee Chair in March of this year was not mentioned in the article, only the fact that Rangel vows to fight for his seat.

This election cycle is somewhat different that those of the past, with anti-incumbent sentiment at an all-time high, and incumbents facing multiple challengers from both opposition parties as well as from their own party, and Rangel is no exception. The fact that polls, in general, show the opposition to incumbents with an estimated 6 point lead on most generic surveys, makes this case especially dangerous to Democrats, who hold the majority of seats in both the House and Senate.

Therefore, the press, appears to have taken sides in this case, and with this article, is intentionally and erroneously blaming the GOP for bringing charges against a Democrat who has violated the ethics rules of the House, and has refused to negotiate and or step down, although given the chance on multiple occasions.

It is no wonder therefore, that a recent poll by Gallop on “Confidence in Institutions” shows media right down there with Congress in the Trust Factor: Congress at the bottom of with an historic 11% trust factor, and Television News (22%) and Newspapers (25%) showing only one quarter of the population is confident that they are being provided with accurate reporting.

On Rangel’s evasion of taxes, one has to play devil’s advocate, as this nation was founded on the avoidance of paying taxes, however, as Democrats in general favor taxing everyone and their dogs (see Massachusetts), it is the hypocrisy, rather than the actual act, which is deserving of scorn by the populace. As to the news organizations, one knows that were Charlie Rangel a Republican, he would have already been tried, convicted and hung in the Press, effectively forcing his resignation in the perceived court of public opinion. However, moving forward, the press no longer, according to Gallop, has the ability to move mountains, or make much of an impact at all in elections (unless providing impeccable back-up including full length videos’, 8 X10 color glossy’s and a host of evidence (see Massachusetts favorite folk artist, Arlo Guthrie’s Thanksgiving Favorite; Alice’s Restaurant as a guide to excessive evidence required.) even then, scrutiny may be in order.

The only way that Rangel will be held accountable is by the voters, who, as previously stated now have a choice in November: One Reverend Michael Faulkner Faulkner for go here to donate and or volunteer should one feel that Rangel needs more than a reprimand from Congress. The AP understands, anti-incumbency, all too well.

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