CBC Blasts GOP for Targeting Rangel’s Gavel

Posted October 8, 2009 at 12:10pm

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus are blasting Republicans for making what they called “an end-run— around the ethics process by trying to force their embattled colleague, Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.), to surrender his gavel amidst an ethics investigation into his personal finances.The CBC made the charge in a letter they sent Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Wednesday, the same day that lawmakers voted largely along party lines to beat back the latest GOP attempt to force Rangel from his chairmanship.“Regrettably, the minority has repeatedly attempted to make an end-run around the bipartisan procedures for investigating possible ethics issues,— they wrote. “These Republican attempts to presume guilt before an investigation has been completed violate the core American principle of the presumption of innocence. These attempts also will discourage Members in the future from self-reporting any potential ethics issues, and will distract from the important work of the House to fix the economy, put Americans back to work, and improve access to health care.—Rangel helped found the CBC in 1971.