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Ethics Will Consider Punishment for Rangel Thursday

The House ethics committee will meet Thursday to determine whether to punish Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) after a subcommittee ruled that he violated the chamber’s rules.

“Pursuant to Committee Rule 24, the members of the full Committee will determine by majority vote what action should be taken with respect to possible sanctions in this matter,” ethics Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) wrote in a letter published Tuesday on the committee’s website.

An adjudicatory subcommittee found Tuesday that Rangel broke House rules, ruling against him on 11 of 13 charges leveled by an investigative panel earlier this year.

The violations stemmed from charges that Rangel misused federal resources to solicit donations for a City College of New York center named in his honor, used a rent-stabilized apartment for his campaign office, failed to pay taxes on a villa in the Dominican Republic and filed inaccurate financial disclosure forms.

The Committee on Standards of Official Conduct may select from a range of punishments, the most significant of which includes reprimand, censure or a motion for expulsion from the chamber. Those penalties would also require a vote of the full House. The panel could opt for lesser sanctions, including a letter of reproval.

The meeting will be held in the Longworth House Office Building at noon Thursday.

Both Rangel and Blake Chisam, the ethics committee’s chief counsel who acted as a prosecutor in the adjudicatory hearing, will be allowed 30 minutes to make oral arguments Thursday.

Under ethics committee rules, Rangel could opt to waive the public hearing.

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