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Charlie Rangel is no crook

Charlie Rangel is no crook. He’s right to insist on the opportunity to clear his name, because the charges against him range from the technical all the way to the trivial.

All right, there’s one exception: On his federal tax returns, Rangel failed to declare rental income from a vacation property he owns in the Dominican Republic -- a mortifying embarrassment for the one-time chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, which writes the tax code. But certain facts about this transgression rarely get mentioned. For one thing, Rangel’s so-called “villa” can’t be very palatial, since it cost only $82,750 when he bought it in 1987. For another, Rangel has already filed amended tax returns and paid everything he owed, plus penalties and interest.

The remaining charges are yawn-inducing. Even assuming that the allegations, as presented to the House Ethics Committee, are wholly true, the case against Rangel has a Gertrude Stein problem: There’s no there there.

Rangel is accused of abusing his office -- using congressional staff, official stationery, and the unique access that his power and seniority gave him -- to raise funds for a Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service at the City College of New York. The idea was to create an institution, situated in his Harlem district, that would house his papers and curate his legacy.

This can accurately be described as hubris. But if it’s a crime for powerful, long-serving members of Congress to hold themselves in abnormally high regard -- and to believe that future generations can learn from their sterling example -- then we’re going to have to build more prisons.

Rangel apparently was careless in filling out his required financial disclosure forms; he should have known better than to take that important exercise so lightly. And he’s accused of using a rent-controlled Harlem apartment as a campaign office -- which, I suppose, makes him the first New Yorker to look for loopholes in the city’s Byzantine rent-control laws. But where’s the old-fashioned venality? Where’s the out-and-out graft? Where’s even the hint of avarice?

What’s missing is any allegation that Rangel bent or broke a single House rule -- or even a New York city ordinance -- for his own gain. The Ethics Committee charges make much of a promotional flyer for the proposed Rangel Center that indicated Rangel would have an office at the facility. But, come on, does that really constitute a “personal benefit” under the law? Does anyone think that the legendary Charlie Rangel, after representing Harlem for four decades, doesn’t have a friend or two who would be happy to give him all the office space he wants once he eventually retires?

Rangel was trying to satisfy his ego, not line his pockets. The real crime would be if such a long, distinguished, important public career ended in disgrace.

By Eugene Robinson  | August 4, 2010; 5:37 PM ET
Categories:  Robinson  | Tags:  Eugene Robinson  
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Comments

Mr. Robinson has sunk to a new low, defending Congressman Rangel. I'm guessing that Mr. Robinson's standard for public office is anyone who isn't currently in jail.

Rangel has 4 rent controlled apartments in NYC. There is no possible excuse for apartments 2, 3 & 4, but being a politician certainly has its perks.

Posted by: concernedcitizen3 | August 4, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Gene, If your intent was to defend Mr. Rangel, I think you have actually done the opposite. This is an Ethics inquiry, not a criminal one. No one has accused him of being a crook. If these ethics violations are so minor, but obvious, then why doesn't he just accept the reprimand. He doesn't say that he didn't make the mistakes or oversights that were stated, so just suck it up, apologize and move on. He is a well-liked and respected member. I think he has made his situation worse by exhibiting hubris and the attitude that he is no worse than anyone else and that he is being tarred as a crook. Mr. Rangel would be better served if he listened to friends and supporters who advise him to show leadership and dignity by accepting that he made errors in judgement. Americans always admire leaders are big enough to admit their mistakes.

Posted by: coco7 | August 4, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

Gene, If your intent was to defend Mr. Rangel, I think you have actually done the opposite. This is an Ethics inquiry, not a criminal one. No one has accused him of being a crook. If these ethics violations are so minor, but obvious, then why doesn't he just accept the reprimand. He doesn't say that he didn't make the mistakes or oversights that were stated, so just suck it up, apologize and move on. He is a well-liked and respected member. I think he has made his situation worse by exhibiting hubris and the attitude that he is no worse than anyone else and that he is being tarred as a crook. Mr. Rangel would be better served if he listened to friends and supporters who advise him to show leadership and dignity by accepting that he made errors in judgement. Americans always admire leaders are big enough to admit their mistakes.

Posted by: coco7 | August 4, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

Just keep on justifying Rangel's actions and prove yourself an irrelevant partisan. Thanks for at least not trying to hide it.

Posted by: Cryos | August 4, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

It is rare that I ever agree with Robinson. I like Charlie Rangel and I am a white, female Republican. I would like to see him continue to represent the people of Harlem, who need him and whom he has served admirably for 40 years. He has paid his taxes; he has given up the residential office space, so let the man spend his remaining years doing what he has done well all these many years.

Posted by: Kansas28 | August 4, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Another poster child for term limits.

Posted by: amazd | August 4, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

I agree that it's pretty small stuff but the collection is the problem. The worst of the charges are the allegation that he added a tax loophole he was originally opposed to following lobbying by a potential donor and that he falsely applied for the 4th rent controlled apartment on behalf of his son rather than his campaign. Also damaging is the impression that he and his staff are totally disorganized, incompetent, careless and occasionally even reckless when it comes to his personal finances and congressional disclosure forms. He is a beloved figure in his district and on capital hill and seems to be a decent person -- I hope the defense he offers shows that the truth is more nuanced than the image created in the report but that he is able to admit to his mistakes.

Posted by: wswest | August 4, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Nice try idiot. Yes, he is a criminal. Spin it all you want to... bottom line is that Rangel broke the law. Tax forms are pretty clear when it comes to asking about "other sources of income". My guess is he didn't "forget" to take any deductions for expenses and upkeep on the property. Did you REALLY expect him not to make good on taxes he should have already paid by law?

Good grief. Stop making excuses for these people.

Posted by: savannah4 | August 4, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson:

I have read your column long enough to know that if Rep. Rangel had an "R" next to his name, you would not be claiming "no big deal". I wonder, if I had done some of things that Rangel did, would the IRS be so forgiving?

Posted by: bethg1841 | August 4, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

I voted for Charlie Rangel when I lived in his district. I agree, most of these charges are petty. Many people outside New York might be surprised that occupying multiple rent-controlled apartments is even considered wrong, much less a hanging offense. But the allegation that he did a deal to procure a tax loophole for a contributor to his ego-stroking "charity" is serious indeed. If true, that was selling legislation for money, which is about the worst thing any member of Congress can do. That the money didn't go into his own pockets is at best a mitigating circumstance.

Posted by: sonofyork | August 4, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Can you believe this guy? Robinson needs to not be carried by this paper any longer. then again at least he elicits an emotional response from his readers (albeit disgust).

Posted by: goodczara | August 4, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

You can't really be surprised by Eugene's defense of Rangel if you occasionally read his apologies for liberals in general and blacks in particular. Treat his columns as the comic relief they are.

Posted by: ddnfla | August 4, 2010 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson...in column after column, you prove you are a racist pig.

Posted by: cfitzpatrick2 | August 4, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Black black black.
Black blackity black black.
Black black, blackity black.

Black black

Posted by: MrMeaner | August 4, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

"

Mr. Robinson...in column after column, you prove you are a racist pig.

Posted by: cfitzpatrick2 | August 4, 2010 8:09 PM"

It takes one to know one, fitzie!

Posted by: thrh | August 4, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised by the nastiness of the response to this mild and, to me, very persuasive column. People who run for public office tend to think well of themselves, but as Mr. Robinson rightly points out, this is hardly a crime. And Rangel's "transgressions" are petty indeed compared with those of, ahem, certain Members of Congress who trade their votes for oil, gas, investment bank and health care lobbyists' dollars. I know who's looking out for my interests, and I'd take Charlie Rangel any day over those in Congress who have been bought and paid for by corporate interests.

Posted by: philamara1 | August 4, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Yup, Rangel should be LOCKED UP!

Along with Nikki Haley, apparently...

Posted by: DDAWD | August 4, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

You said "For one thing, Rangel’s so-called “villa” can’t be very palatial, since it cost only $82,750 when he bought it in 1987." As someone who lived and worked in the DR from 1985-88 I can tell you that US$87k would have bought you a real villa, 4-5 bedrooms, pool, quarters for staff. I worked for an NGO on local scale US$175 per MONTH. So your argument falls apart at the start.

Posted by: tianyisun | August 4, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

cfitzpatrick2--your "racist pig" comment re Robinson really hurts. Why? Because I have admired him for many years. My admiration has ended. I watch him on MSNBC. I also am a Black American. Mr. Robinson's constant excuses for Barack Obama and any other Black politico are absolutely embarrassing. I do not understand the motivation. Why can't he (and many other Black pundits) be objective about people who share their ethnicity.

Perhaps "racist pig" is the most succinct description...

Posted by: Kateri2006 | August 4, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I think it's fair to call him a crook and in violation of NY housing laws just based on his housing situation - the dude has 4 rent controlled apartments. He took two apartments in Harlem, knocked the walls down to make himself quite the suite. This is well known, the apartment is huge and has been profiled widely. Used one more rent controlled apartment for a campaign office and another for his personal use too.

Do people who have villa's in the DR and in leadership positions in Congress need to be told not to do this?

Posted by: Dremit97 | August 4, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/11/nyregion/11rangel.html

Sorry he has 3 adjacent apartments to live in and 1 for the campaign office. My bad :~(

Posted by: Dremit97 | August 4, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson is defending him because he is black. Just like he defends Obama because he is black. I am a die-hard liberal(cut me and I bleed blue), but a crook is a crook. Mr. Rangel is a crook. Can't wait for Robinson's piece on Maxine Waters.

Posted by: RafikiRuby | August 4, 2010 9:07 PM | Report abuse

To say that Charlie Rangel is no crook is like saying Hitler was no NAZI.

Posted by: madmike272 | August 4, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Charlie is a crook.
No two ways about it.
He is likable, and I do feel a bit sorry for him.
The fact that this is all happening at once is no coincidence.
Rangel has been doing this kind of thing for his whole career, yet he and Moonbat Maxine get busted now...in the midst of all of this racial tension...at the same time?
What better way to get rid of two Hillary supporters, use race-anger to motivate black voters to go to the polls in a mid-term election, and in the process, remove an idiot who can't keep her mouth shut about your agenda
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OrA9zj94NuU&feature=related

But Eugene Robinson is a hate-filled racist, regardless.

I wonder if he ever feels guilty when some black guy is driven mad, and then kills innocent fellow workers and himself, because of the race-hate and paranoia inspired by people like Robinson?

Probably not

Posted by: MrMeaner | August 4, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse


mr. robinson:

even charlie rangel could not possibly agree with you.

charlie rangel is no racist.

you, on the other hand, are the worst kind of racist, because unlike thinking people, you don't even want to know the facts before you let your (racist) freak flag fly.


Posted by: potomacfever00 | August 4, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Robinson=racist!

You have achieved a new low with this trash.

Posted by: trjn30 | August 4, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

Eugene:-(
Rangel is not only a crook...he's an unethical crook! You need to turn in your Pulitzer and resign. You are just not credible anymore (as if you ever were).

Posted by: DQuixote1 | August 4, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Ethics laws are so lame, aren't they?

Posted by: diehardlib | August 4, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Typical RACE-BASED opinions from the WP's biggest racist (and Pulitzer Prize winner???).

Wonder how much support Newt Gingrich got from him 15, 16 years ago. Or not that long ago, Trent Lott?

Yes; Ridiculous questions.

Posted by: Milpen | August 4, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Can anyone imagine Robinson making these arguments with respect to a Congressman with a different skin color?

What useless, affirmative action, bigot.

Posted by: ronStrong | August 4, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

In my opinion, elected officials should make sure they are squeaky clean. Any shenanigans and they're going to be front page news. Yet week after week we find out some new unethical, illegal or immoral behavior. So are we electing the brightest bulbs?

To all you disgusting racists out there: You really don't add anything to the conversation. Isn't there some nice neo-Nazi website you can hang out in instead of this one?

Posted by: MNUSA | August 4, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

And OJ Simpson wasn't a murderer. Just as white racists are too ready to find blacks guilty of charges against them, blacks like Robinson need to find all blacks innocent. As for you liberals who like to fling the word "racist" around, feel free to do so. I have decided to speak my mind on all matters including race. I will not be silenced by those who pretend to my moral superiors.

Posted by: mhr614 | August 4, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Keep digging it deeper Mr. Robinson. The sound you hear in November will be the trash being taken out.

Posted by: sperrico | August 4, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, Eugene..while I usually agree with you, I can't in this circumstance. Ok, so maybe he did not really enrich himself. Still he did wrong. He paid his taxes after the fact. That makes it ok? So how about if I rob a bank, then return the money. You think I still would not go to jail? Even if it was sloppy accounting, it does not mitigate the fact he broke the law. As many judges have said, ignorance is no excuse for breaking the law.

I am a democrat. I like Rangel. Maybe it was innocent. Or just arrogance. It doesn't matter. He must face the consequences of his actions, sad as it may be.

Posted by: sandnsmith | August 4, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

What a pathetic apologia!

Any one of Charlie Rangel's abuses would be offensive, but let's pick just one. Say, the FOUR (not one, FOUR) rent-stabilitzed Manhattan apartments Mr. Rangel obtained, in the best building in Harlem.

Regular New Yorkers are only allowed to have one. Some do cheat - I once had a friend whose family had obtained two, although they were not adjacent. Yet Charlie Rangel has FOUR.

When I went to try to rent a rent-stabilized apartment, probably around the same time Mr. Rangel rented his, a regular person couldn't get even one of these apartments without paying exorbitant fees. Yet Mr. Rangel has FOUR.

Charlie Rangel is a disgusting thief, and it's hard to fathom why Mr. Robinson would make these unconscionable excuses for this kind of abuse.

Really, I can't imagine why he would do it.

Posted by: Itzajob | August 4, 2010 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Hello MNUSA
You must be new to Earth.
Eugene Robinson may be the most racist human on the planet.
Race consumes his every thought.
Sometimes I visit this site specifically so I can shout down racism that is sure to be in a Robinson article.
Eugene Robinson is the best living example of what the left falsely accuses Glenn Beck of being.

Now we have a black guy in Conn. who kills his co-workers because of some imagined racial harassment.
The sad thing is, someone who regularly reads hate-filled, paranoid rants, and identifies with the writer because they share the same race, may really start to believe that everyone else is out to get them.
That's sad.

Posted by: MrMeaner | August 4, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, as a fellow Afican-American I can be straight up: you hate Republicans and will excuse any malfeasance by a Democrat. Call me an Uncle Tom if you want, but it's still the truth: Democrats are not above the law. Period.

Posted by: LibertyTom | August 4, 2010 11:01 PM | Report abuse

If Rangel had been a white Republican from the South, Eugene Robinson would have written ten columns by now shrieking from the rooftops that the Congressman is guilty and should be ridden out of town on the nearest rail.

I eagerly (ha) await Robinson's opinion on Maxine "My Husband Just Happens to Be on the Board of a Bank" Waters.

Posted by: rah1962 | August 4, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

All Bill Jefferson was trying to do was attempt to help business and look what happened to him. He deserves a presidential pardon. His biggest offense, I suppose, was failing to kiss Nancy's dirty political rectum.

Posted by: johntu | August 4, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, How can we have true equality in this country if everyone is not held to the same standards and accountability. Certainly Mr. Rangle is not a disadvantaged youthful man. We cannot be leaders if we expect crutches to support us when we do wrong. We need to take it like a man. I could be one of the many WHITE Independents who voted for Obama to bring race relations under control. Instead it seems worse today than 2 years ago. You don't hear any black politicos exhorting the young black to stay away from crime. Perhaps my HDTV needs to be adjusted, but at least 75% of violent crime now is by blacks. Where is the congressional black caucus and the historical 44th president to lead these other blacks from a life of crime or in the pen.

Sorry Eugene, the black men don't seem to want to show the black youth the right way of being a good man. Mr Rangle has done a lot of good for this country, but he may be throwing it all away by his example. The youth in the black community are in need of good role models. My HDTV ain't lying to me. There are far too many blacks being videotaped robbing and shooting a store clerk. When I am in their jury, they will hang for their crime. What a way to learn right from wrong.

Posted by: bigedpape | August 4, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I like to hear his point of view but I definitely believe he is wrong here. A crook is a crook and it is that simple, we need to run them all out of Washington.

Posted by: stackedhi | August 4, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson,

IF you and/or i had done exactly the SAME things that Charlie Rangel has been accused of, we would be in FEDERAL PRISON right now. - FACT!

one of the things that DISGUSTS me about this country is that the ELITES of the government seem to believe that "the members of the RULING class" are ABOVE the LAWS that they pass for "the little people" to live under.

so save your weak/lame DIMocRAT-worshiping EXCUSES for the congress-critter & let's INDICT/TRY him in US District Court & IF he is found guilty, by a jury of his peers, send him off for a LONG stay in a "room to which he has no suitable key".

yours, TN46
coordinator, CCTPP

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 4, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Rangel knows better. He didn't think anyone would notice or care. He deserves and should receive some kind of penalty for his sloppiness and/or hubris.
However...if you're going to enforce ethics rules in Rangel's case, don't you think it would be nice to apply them to some other Congressmen/Congresswomen as well? Or do we only penalize the black members of Congress when they screw up?
You don't agree with Gene? You're entitled, but why does your disagreement immediately descend into name-calling? Would you call a white guy a racist just because he defends another white guy? Are we jumping to some conclusions just a little too quickly?

Posted by: SuzanneM5 | August 4, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Robinson, your analysis sucks on this one.

Posted by: sassafrasnewport | August 4, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson,

You haven't even got the basic facts right: as to the Rangel Center at City College, the Congressman is accused of using his position as Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee to raise $1 million from a corporation that had an interest in having a part of the tax law revised. Mr. Rangel is charged with changing his original opinion about the merits of the revision after getting the donation, deciding to support the change--essentially a quid pro quo.

Let's give Rangel the chance to defend himself but his supporters really should get their own facts correct if they want to help him do that.

Posted by: harmiclir | August 4, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Satisfying your ego to this degree is a shame to the office. He should be gone. Even more so since in his day, he was such an effective public servant. But gosh darnnit, that ego got it the way. Time to go.

Posted by: sassafrasnewport | August 4, 2010 11:36 PM | Report abuse

All you had to do to save space and our time was write:
He's not guilty because he's black.

I mean we all know we are all guilty of not liking Obama's policies just because he is black. We don't like his healthcare - we're called racists. Don't like his bailouts - we're called racists. Don't like his stimulus - we're called racists...........

I guess here though it's a little harder so you make everything sound so trivial and how dare we waste our time????? And I bet 82,000 back in 1987 would be pretty palatial for many spots in the Dominican Republic.
You write:
"The real crime would be if such a long, distinguished, important public career ended in disgrace." The real crime will be that after Pelosi stalling for 2 years it doesn't end in disgrace for his abuses.

Posted by: justmyvoice | August 4, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Is Robinson is a racist or just stupid?

Posted by: Jmacaco4 | August 4, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson, this is the first time that I have disagreed with an editorial offering of yours. Mr Rangel knows better and in an environment where there is undisguised hostility towards black men, he should have known not to expose himself as he has done. There is absolutely no excuse. I agree that much of it is penny ante stuff and that makes it worse. He needs to go before he makes himself look more idiotic. His record speaks for itself.

Posted by: Draesop | August 5, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

We're not pimps; we're LUV BROKERS!

Posted by: carlbatey | August 5, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, I usually agree with you but you're out to lunch on this one. Because of the position he holds, Rangel, if nothing else, should obey the law to the letter. Further, he should be an exemplar to anyone who looks at him.

Rangel got greedy and he got caught and his 40 years in Congress doesn't provide him with so much as a fig leaf to hide behind.

Posted by: reporter1 | August 5, 2010 12:47 AM | Report abuse

Republicans support foreign companies that make money in the U.S. but don't have to pay income taxes that rip this country off for 100,000,000+ and go after a collegue for neglecting to report a rental income?

Wow, how come I'm not impressed with their present moral compass?

Posted by: AverageJane | August 5, 2010 12:56 AM | Report abuse

Gene, did you lose your mind on the MSNBC sets you have been visiting? You might be well-served to avoid penning a defense of Rep. Waters. Knowing what you would be writing, whatever is left of your credibility and your personal integrity would be lost forever. Never bet with your heart, and you should never write with your heart, when it comes to ethically-challenged Democrats.

Posted by: stvcar | August 5, 2010 1:09 AM | Report abuse

I am convinced now, more than ever, WAPO is so stressed for cash they have unleashed their joker editorial staff to come up with the most outlandish, idiotic and foolhardy stories so that they can drive eyeballs (and more importantly advertising dollar$) to the site.

WAFJ.

Posted by: zap123 | August 5, 2010 1:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm surprised by the nastiness of the response to this mild and, to me, very persuasive column. People who run for public office tend to think well of themselves, but as Mr. Robinson rightly points out, this is hardly a crime. And Rangel's "transgressions" are petty indeed compared with those of, ahem, certain Members of Congress who trade their votes for oil, gas, investment bank and health care lobbyists' dollars. I know who's looking out for my interests, and I'd take Charlie Rangel any day over those in Congress who have been bought and paid for by corporate interests.

Posted by: philamara1 | August 4, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse
______________________________

you know why you are suprised? Because you refuse to see the truth. White people love to say black people play the race card or are reverse racists. Yet white people never miss an opportunity to treat a black person different than a white person (do you really think a white congressman would be treated as Rangel is being treated) and love to say any black person who defends a black person is only doing it because they are a racist black (also, any black person that voted for Obama is racist, never mind the same number of blacks voted for Kerry and Clinton).

Posted by: comeonpeople | August 5, 2010 1:28 AM | Report abuse

I am not persuaded by Mr. Robinson's excuses for Mr. Rangel. The "aw, come on" style is disturbing, the tone dismissive when discussing the ethics of a United States Congressman. Let's have some facts: does Rangel use an accountant? What ownership criteria affect NYC rent controlled apartments? What caused Rangel to pay the taxes; did he publicly note his error? Lots to assess here without the whitewashing of Mr. Robinson.

Posted by: bgahearn | August 5, 2010 1:28 AM | Report abuse

I hope his lawyers make a better case.

Posted by: rusty3 | August 5, 2010 1:30 AM | Report abuse

Why Charlie Rangel is no crook: Because he's black, and so am I.

Sincerely, Eugene Robinson

Posted by: silencedogoodreturns | August 5, 2010 1:31 AM | Report abuse

Very poor effort, Eugene, very poor.

You sound like Krauthammer defending the neo-cons. "Well, you know, they didn't really MEAN anything BAD."

Posted by: RoJaKa | August 5, 2010 1:32 AM | Report abuse

Funny, isn't it, how allllll these people who hate the Washington Post and its columnists are such avid readers? Who feeds them their talking points?

Posted by: chicolini1 | August 5, 2010 1:34 AM | Report abuse

While Eugene's latest "effort" is the height of ridiculousness -- and almost certainly is born of the color of Mr. Rangel's skin as well as the "D" after his name -- it is refreshing to read through all of the comments and know that Americans are on to his nonsense and are smarter than Robinson or any liberals give us credit for.

No one is buying your BS, Gene-O. Maybe we can post this column to the FAILblog.

What a joke you are.

Posted by: etpietro | August 5, 2010 1:58 AM | Report abuse

HOW ABOUT THE FOUR POOR FAMILIES, PROBABLY BLACK, WHO WERE CHEATED OUT OF RENT CONTROLLED APTS. BY CHARLIE THE CROOK, GENE?

OR THE WHITE WRITER YOU CHEATED OUT OF A PULITZER WHEN YOU GOT YOUR AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PRIZE?

YOU ARE NOT ONLY A RACIST DEMAGOGUE GENE, BUT YOU ARE A MEDIOCRE RACIST DEMAGOGUE.

Posted by: beecheery | August 5, 2010 2:55 AM | Report abuse

If Hitler or Stalin had been black you'd read a similar column from Robinson defending them. This guy is the definition of racist and an absolute joke.

Posted by: zosimos | August 5, 2010 3:09 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget that Rangel is the guy who tried to reintroduce the draft back in 2006 because his "purpose in introducing this legislation is for it to serve as a constant reminder that we have lost 2,200 of the best, brightest and bravest Americans, have had thousands more maimed, and countless Iraqi citizens killed."

He should be kicked out of office to serve as a constant reminder to all politicians that they are not above the law.

Posted by: antispy | August 5, 2010 3:13 AM | Report abuse

What a ridiculous column that would never
have been thought of, written, or printed
if Rangel were white. This may be the shoddiest column I have read in the Post. And there's been plenty to choose from. This is pathetic and the alleged journalist who wrote this should retire.
He's spent, sunk, and needs a vacation.

Posted by: carinelliM | August 5, 2010 3:18 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Rangel,

I agree. Much of this is yawn-inducing, and when one considers the transgressions of Pelosi, Reid, Connell, McConnell, and the late Ted Kennedy regarding property taxes and conflicts of interest via health care, one must wonder what is afoot here.

I don't understand this attack on Rangel, and I don't like it.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 3:18 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Rangel,

I agree. Much of this is yawn-inducing, and when one considers the transgressions of Pelosi, Reid, Connell, McConnell, and the late Ted Kennedy regarding property taxes and conflicts of interest via health care, one must wonder what is afoot here.

I don't understand this attack on Rangel, and I don't like it.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 3:19 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson,

I agree. Much of this is yawn-inducing, and when one considers the transgressions of Pelosi, Reid, Connell, McConnell, and the late Ted Kennedy regarding property taxes and conflicts of interest via health care, one must wonder what is afoot here.

I don't understand this attack on Rangel, and I don't like it.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 3:20 AM | Report abuse

Nice job Farnaz. I guess you didn't like the "attack" on Ted Bundy either. What attack? This investigation has dragged on
for 2+ years. It's not as if the corrupt huckster got sucker-punched. Are you tired? Is it past your bedtime?

Posted by: carinelliM | August 5, 2010 3:24 AM | Report abuse

Guess since you posted it three times it is past your bedtime. Want me to tell you a story? How 'bout the three (or four) little rent controled apartments?

Posted by: carinelliM | August 5, 2010 3:26 AM | Report abuse


Major brands always give out their popular brand samples (in a way it is similar to coupons) I alway use qualityhealth to get mine http://bit.ly/bf1xD8 enjoy your free samples

Posted by: kameronjo | August 5, 2010 3:31 AM | Report abuse

"Rangel apparently was careless in filling out his required financial disclosure forms."
---------------------------------------------
It seems that this was serious matter, and this is why he should resign. The lunatic Right will use his troubles, if he remains in office, to try to make political gains. If he wins his court battle, he could try to enter the Congress again after all cleared up.

Posted by: farid-f | August 5, 2010 3:57 AM | Report abuse

Rangel, like his predecessor, has been a parasite as least as much as he has ever been a public servant. Mr. Robinson is entitled to his opinion and to the free speech to express it, but he does himself no honor. He makes of himself a piece of evidence at least as much as he may be an interpreter of evidence.

Posted by: alfisher1 | August 5, 2010 4:05 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Rangel is my congressman. I can tell you, friend Robinson, everyone in this district knows whether he is a crook or not. Whether or not we should reelect him is not a simple question, though.

You may like to remember Mencken's words: "The plain people… are always, in fact, against newspapers, and they are always in favor of what reformers call political corruption. They believe that it keeps money in circulation, and makes for a spacious and stimulating communal life."

Rangel has certain given us flamboyance and power in the Congress. That may be worth a certain amount of loyalty. But let's not cloud the issue by pretending there has been no corruption.

Posted by: dpb23 | August 5, 2010 4:10 AM | Report abuse

Last I heard it was illegal to buy prostitutes, But Sen, Vitter (Republican) is still one of their leaders. And Newt (republican) was forced out as house leader and now repubs think he is presidential material.. But Rangal , isnt that just awful what he did. If he was a Repub he would be considered good enough to run for President

Posted by: jimbobkalina | August 5, 2010 4:12 AM | Report abuse

I've got to hand it to you, Eugene.

You don't try to cover up being a racist.

Posted by: wmpowellfan | August 5, 2010 4:31 AM | Report abuse

It is great to read someone sticking up for Charlie Rangel, which none of his colleagues have the guts to do. Charlie Rangel is one of the most dedicated public servants in Congress; his duties to his constituents and his country are what he lives each day to do. He is admired throughout his dsitrict and beyond for his good works. I am a white female and proud Democrat -- also proud to stand with Charlie Rangel, not against him. The charges are frivolous and not what this great man deserves at this stage in his life and career.

Posted by: jjoyner2 | August 5, 2010 4:56 AM | Report abuse

Ever wonder why corruption is so rampant in this country?

It's because people like Robinson make inane excuses for vermin like Rangel.

It's NOT public service if you're using it as an excuse to steal from the public!

And yes: the Republican are just as bad if not worse. IT DOES NOT MAKE IT OK!!!

TWO WRONGS DON'T MAKE A RIGHT!!

We will NEVER have REAL progress and REAL change until we quit pretending that corruption on the right justifies corruption on the left or vice versa! Rangel, and every OTHER corrupt politician, is responsible for HIS OWN actions. Nothing anyone else, democrat or republican, has ever done in ANY WAY exculpates Rangel or mitigates his crimes!

Even if EVERY SINGLE republican could be PROVEN to be corrupt, it does not justify Rangel's own behavior, for which only HE is responsible, ONE IOTA!!

Others' criminality DOES NOT justify our own!

There is NO such thing as "trivial" public corruption. If we tolerate it, we will have more and the recent history of our tottering state attests to THAT!

If Rangel's convicted, he SHOULD be shot. (I know it will never happen when he's being tried by his fellow criminals who also write the "laws" regarding the corruption in which almost ALL of them engage.) ALL corrupt politicians, even if they stole a dime, should be SHOT. We should have ZERO tolerance for this sort of nonsense and if people don't want to expose themselves to extra scrutiny and greater punishment, they need not stand for public office.

Posted by: andrew23boyle | August 5, 2010 5:07 AM | Report abuse

An ordinary person who did the things Rangel did would have been facing criminal charges long ago. Eugene, you're an embarassment.

Posted by: Chippewa | August 5, 2010 5:18 AM | Report abuse

Disgusting article apologizing for criminal activity from someone with 40 years of experience as a "law maker".

If I didn't report $600k in income, I'd be in jail right now or have the IRS banging down my door everyday looking for the back taxes.

I'd also argue that the abuse of rent controlled units in Harlem isn't just a "trivial" or "technical" problem. Its defrauding the residents of NYC who could live there instead.

Rangel should be disgraced and made an example of for everyone else feeding at the trough in the House. I don't care if you are a "distinguished" member. This guy is the poster boy for term limits.

Robinson should resign along with Rangel. The day that corruption in our government fails to raise the pulse of an American is a sad day indeed.

Posted by: BurtReynolds | August 5, 2010 5:28 AM | Report abuse

Abusing the power of the people's office to solicit funding for a monument to one's ego is hardly a trivial or technical failing, Mr. Robinson. Mr. Rangel has no business of his own in Congress, but only and absolutely exclusively the business of the citizens of his district. Congressmen (and others) are called "public servants" because their franchise and duty is to serve the public's interest, not to feed their own egos.

Posted by: dryrunfarm1 | August 5, 2010 5:48 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, I generally like your articles and posts; I cannot agree with you on this one. Mr. Rangel is a crook and got caught "ridin' dirty." Mr. Rangel refused to settle, the Congressional Black Caucus won't defend him, the President is trying to gently nudge Rangel into resignation/retirement and an ethics trial will be Rangel's undoing. I am sorry to tell you, Robinson, you are wrong on this one.

Posted by: meldupree | August 5, 2010 5:53 AM | Report abuse

Eugene is reaching new heights - defending the indefensible. Rangel was in charge of tax law and he cheated. He needs to be publically called out and then he needs to leave.

Posted by: delusional1 | August 5, 2010 5:55 AM | Report abuse

No, good old Charlie ain't a crook.

So what if he cheated on his income tax? Or took advantage of his public service to line his pockets? Or shook down donors in exchange for political favors for the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service at City College of New York?

Thirteen charges against good old Charlie? A piffle! Laws and rules are for poor schlubs like you and me. They mean nothing to good old Charlie.

After all, he's entitled to take all he can. He's a congressman! He's got friends in high places -- and in the media, like good old Robinson. When you're all in it together, it's O.K. to overlook stealing and lying and cheating and tax-dodging and law-breaking. That's what friends are for. And if people catch you, just call them racists. That'll fix 'em.

It's not like the taxpayers don't have more money. Heck, this country is made of money, and the more our congressmen can appropriate for their own personal use and continued stay in office, the better.

No, good old Charlie ain't a crook, and good old Robinson ain't a journalist.

Posted by: spamagnet987 | August 5, 2010 6:07 AM | Report abuse

By the majority of these posts, it seems Mr. Robinson hasn't got much support on this one.

You gave it your best, Gene, but maybe you should write this one off and get back to cheerleading for more taxes and bigger government.

Posted by: dryrunfarm1 | August 5, 2010 6:17 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson may have a point IF these charges were in a Court of law and these were criminal proceedings. They are not, and he is not on criminal trial. These proceedings are to determine if Rangel followed House ETHICAL rules. I can not believe Robinson can honestly say Rangel was ethical in his conduct. Mr. Robinson had little credibility with the reading public and this is just another circus performance that the Post pays him for one a week.

Posted by: logan303 | August 5, 2010 6:22 AM | Report abuse

The question of course is a cunnard. The issue is not whether or not Representative Rangle committed a crime or even whether he benefited personally and directly from his actions. The question is whether Rep. Rangle is corrupt: whether he abused the powers of his office for his own purpose and in doing so he damaged the office itself; whether that was for personal monetary benefit or some other objective in unimportant.

The answer of course is that he did. He using the trappings of office, the Chairman's stationary, to pressure contributions from companys with direct business before his committee. This is an abuse of power and office.

His use of a rent controlled apartment, contrary to the laws of New York City -- one of three he had control over we should point out -- directly benefits his campaign: as a penny saved is a penny earned, a dollar saved to the campaign is a good as a dollar contributed.

And of course the tax thing was a civil violation, but it does not matter the size of the house, but the size of the taking. Sure, when he got caught he did not flee the country to continuing evading taxes; he paid his penalty. I guess he liked his job too much. But his explanation, that he did not understand the tax law, even if true, is not acceptable for the Chairman of the committee that writes the tax laws.

Posted by: krush01 | August 5, 2010 6:45 AM | Report abuse

You never change Eugene - if Rangel were white and a Republican you would be attacking him, but ANY African-America Democrat will ALWAYS be innocent in your eyes. Your kind of racism is the worst America has, and is now more prevalent in the African-American community than ever before - those that were once the down-trodden and victims of racism have become the most strident racists of all.

Posted by: Realist201 | August 5, 2010 6:46 AM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is no crook. That is your opinion. Mine is that he is a thief and liar.

Posted by: ZebZ | August 5, 2010 6:48 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson. I hope you are writing this just to get a rise out of people. Because if you believe it you should be ashamed. Rangel is one of the "do you know who I am?" guys. Who can have respect for that? The position Rangel is in is a privilege and responsiblity. He uses it for power and he was caught. How can anyone defend that?

Posted by: ProudAmerican1 | August 5, 2010 6:48 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson. I hope you are writing this just to get a rise out of people. Because if you believe it you should be ashamed. Rangel is one of the "do you know who I am?" guys. Who can have respect for that? The position Rangel is in is a privilege and responsiblity. He uses it for power and he was caught. How can anyone defend that?

Posted by: ProudAmerican1 | August 5, 2010 6:50 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, you are wrong. Your opinion is wrong, your use of facts is wrong. And it is wrong for the Washington Post to continue to employ you as a columnist. Any buyer of the Post would improve circulation immediately by removing such poor writers as you. Your columns are mostly noise. Sad. I would suggest that you purchase an Adobe Reader to read the charges against Mr. Rangel. And maybe that you confer with the legal staff at the Post and get their opinion of Mr. Rangel's problems. But when have you ever researched anything?

Posted by: bobbo2 | August 5, 2010 6:54 AM | Report abuse

Robinson is racist through and through. He would defend any liberal; but, more importantly any Black liberal. It is amazing to me that such a lack luster writer has space in any newpaper. I do glance at his column so that I can understand the latest in liberal logic.

Posted by: Mindboggle | August 5, 2010 6:59 AM | Report abuse

Where intelligence does not exist. Only wrong resides. Does it ever bother you Mr. Robinson that so many people laugh at you, not with you?

Posted by: bobbo2 | August 5, 2010 7:03 AM | Report abuse

while dem households are sufferring...
michelle is in spain...
rangel will get off on corruption charges...
so will maxine...
obama will give billions to unions...
and America will go up in flames...

Posted by: DwightCollins | August 5, 2010 7:06 AM | Report abuse

Robinson, your columns are trivial junk. Why is it that blacks never condemn blacks for crimes they commit, or in this case if a politician ethical violations. In other words, bad behavior in politics or in society is perfectly ok if you happen to be black. That is according to blacks. Rangel knew exactly what he was doing when he committed the 13 violations. He even had the audacity to blame his wife for the under reported imcome, and his lack of understanding of the spanish language. Would you want this guy in a fox hole with you. Give it a break once and awhile and write an honest column.

Posted by: landrperite | August 5, 2010 7:08 AM | Report abuse

NO CROOK?? Why Eugene? Because he isn't a Republican! Or because he isn't White!

This pander is out of control and so are you Mr. Robinson!

Posted by: jjcrocket14 | August 5, 2010 7:14 AM | Report abuse

Racist blacks will always defend any liberal or other black. Your messiah is out in a landslide in 2012!

Posted by: rollmonte | August 5, 2010 7:14 AM | Report abuse


This collection of words by Mr. Robinson proves that "progressives" are mentally insane.

Posted by: nbklnm4 | August 5, 2010 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Thanks you! Mr. Robinson! Mr. Rangel is not a criminal! "Let the man without sin cast the first stone". The Congress is full of "misbehaviors"--

Posted by: Pegan | August 5, 2010 7:23 AM | Report abuse

Eugene,

Once again you confirm that you view everything through a black lens that absorbs all light. The trouble is, I can't honestly tell whether you actually believe what you write or are just pandering to specific a segment of WAPOs readership. Regardless, you have long lost any claim to the title of journalist.

Posted by: dmt3 | August 5, 2010 7:26 AM | Report abuse

Failing to pay taxes by the chairman of the committee charged w/ writing the tax code is trivial? Uh huh.

Posted by: randysbailin | August 5, 2010 7:30 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson is right. The Representative deserves a fair trail to sort out what is real and what is just publicity. All of our issues deserve this sort of analysis and truth telling.

Too often there is an "allegation" and we have them convicted and ready to punish before anyone knows what really happened.

Trial by publicity.

They we wonder why they will not take a "deal."

Some really are innocent.

Deal with that, too.

Posted by: gary4books | August 5, 2010 7:31 AM | Report abuse

Is this The Onion?

Posted by: kbarker302 | August 5, 2010 7:35 AM | Report abuse

Good article Mr. R. You know in this country we used to require a conviction before we judged people. Looks like times have changed. Reading all this premature partisan crap makes me sick. Charlie Rangel has been accused; he has not been found guilty of anything as of yet. I must say, however, that it is laughable to hear lectures on ethics from the right. These nutwads rarely admit to anywrong doing unless the facts have them firmly held by the "short hairs." Not only is Mr. Rangel entitled to a full hearing he actually did not run away from it as most Republicans do when they are faced with similar circumstances. Also, the Democrats should be commended for fully engaging in ethics hearings, as they have promised. Unfortunately, sticking to your principles isn't always pretty.

Posted by: ruthella10 | August 5, 2010 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Robinson, your columns are trivial junk. Why is it that blacks never condemn blacks for crimes they commit, or in this case if a politician ethical violations. In other words, bad behavior in politics or in society is perfectly ok if you happen to be black. That is according to blacks. Rangel knew exactly what he was doing when he committed the 13 violations. He even had the audacity to blame his wife for the under reported imcome, and his lack of understanding of the spanish language. Would you want this guy in a fox hole with you. Give it a break once and awhile and write an honest column.

Posted by: landrperite | August 5, 2010 7:38 AM | Report abuse

The code of silence among gang members. Pathetic. I guess forgetting to report $500,000 in assets and having not one, but four rent control apartments in NYC is fine with Mr. Robinson.

Pathetic.

Posted by: Cornell1984 | August 5, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

If Rangel was just trying to satisfy his ego, he was doing it with taxpayer money, worse, he thought that was perfectly acceptable. Using tenant rent control designed to help moderate income people rent an apartment to fund four offices at his landlord's expense is a pretty good example of his sense of entitlement.

.


Posted by: hdc77494 | August 5, 2010 7:45 AM | Report abuse

haha, your sucky bias article gets so many rejections by intelligent readers.

Posted by: mechmech | August 5, 2010 7:47 AM | Report abuse

Actually Eugene your entire line of reasoning is (as usual) nothing more than a load of partisan garbage.

I do have a headline for you though, try this one on for size – ‘Eugene Robinson is no journalist’.

Posted by: SayWhat5 | August 5, 2010 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Robinson's defense of Rangel's behavior and "relatively" picayune corruption reminds me of the story about the rich old guy and the young girl.

He asks her if she would sleep with him for a million bucks. "Sure!" she says.

"How about $5?"

"What kind of girl do you think I am?!" she answers angrily.

"We've already established that. Now we're just haggling over the price."


Posted by: spamagnet987 | August 5, 2010 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Eugene writes about the one subject he knows - race. He writes about it every column. The ending is always some poor black person is being subjected in some way by the evil white guy. So, of course a crook like Charlie Rangel will be exonerated by Eugene by default. Just one question: Charlie makes around 200k in his job... where did he get all the other money to buy all these properties?

Posted by: steveb6 | August 5, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Eugene writes about the one subject he knows - race. He writes about it every column. The ending is always some poor black person is being subjected in some way by the evil white guy. So, of course a crook like Charlie Rangel will be exonerated by Eugene by default. Just one question: Charlie makes around 200k in his job... where did he get all the other money to buy all these properties?

Posted by: steveb6 | August 5, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is not a crook. He is black, and by definition, he cannot do no wrong. Remember, blacks are an aggrieved class, and they are perfect by nature.

Posted by: davinci421 | August 5, 2010 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Robinson=Rascist=Hypocrit

Posted by: RW24 | August 5, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

In Eugene's world the only criminals are white men.

Posted by: bmayhewbz@hotmail.com | August 5, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Robinson=Racist=Hypocrite

Posted by: RW24 | August 5, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

"And he’s accused of using a rent-controlled Harlem apartment as a campaign office -- which, I suppose, makes him the first New Yorker to look for loopholes in the city’s Byzantine rent-control laws."

Sorry, Gene, but you have it dead wrong. Every New Yorker knows you can't have more than 1 rent-regulated apartment. And you can't be an elected public official in NYC without knowing the sensitivity and importance of rent laws to NYers. Just go to Tenant Net (http://www.tenant.net/) and search under "Rangel." Rangel has been involved in NYC housing issues forever.

Rangel would make a great W&M Chairman. But he's knowingly abused the NYC rent laws and has got to go.

Posted by: Garak | August 5, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

I like Charlie Rangal. I hope this clears for him and he is able to serve for a few more years and retire as he wishes.

That said. Robinson has devolved into a modern but smooth race baiter. If a white guy with an R behind his name did same thing Rangal did Robinson would be spending the day on MSNBC calling for his scalp.

Disgust is still a basic human emotion.

Posted by: TECWRITE | August 5, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

The Washington Post's/MSNBC's resident race-baiting racist, Eugene Robinson remains eternally obsessed with race, resentment, institutionalizing victimhood, blaming everyone else for failings of those he cares about, and so on and so forth - Mr. Robinson can cease writing furhter articles, we get his 'logic':

'If you're black, you are good, a victim, incapable of being wrong or guilty.'

'If you disagree with anything Robinson or the left believe in, you are a racist, bigot, greedy, or just stupid.'

Thanks Mr. Robinson, we understand you're 'entitlement' to being rude, racist, and a first-rate bigot all under the protection of being a victim, minority, aggrieved, or what have you - hey Mr. Robinson, do you care that I'm a 'brown' son of immigrants and find nearly every single thing you say repungnant, inciting, and shamelessly and politically race based? Oh you don't care, you are the African-American Eugene Robinson, and by the will of God, Obama, Pelosi, and illogical left, you don't need to listen to anyone.

Posted by: vettevision | August 5, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

You can't be a public official and cheat on your taxes. And omitting income is deliberate cheating.

Posted by: AndrewDover | August 5, 2010 8:14 AM | Report abuse

I agree with your article--because I want to. I think people like Charlie Rangel are very necessary for a healthy body politic--he cuts through the fog and you can depend on him. However, my favorite boogie man is the press--you hear all sorts of journalists who say that what Rep Rangel has done is unforgivable. Ruth Marcus said as much on the News Hour. Facts seem lost in the drama. Again, I believe the triviality of the charges are as you describe them because I like the guy and because, well, from what little facts I can glean from the press, they seem trivial to me. And for the Maxine Waters case to suddenly spring up smells of racism to me when presented with what she was supposed to have done, help a constituent organization--did she or her husband actually profit from the so called help? You don't hear about that.

Posted by: SaintJoseph | August 5, 2010 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Yeh right! And if he were White Republican?
More racism!

Posted by: jpalm32 | August 5, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Of course he is not a crook. Accusing a black man of a crime is conspiracy and charging him with this crime is racism. Did I get this right Mr. Robinson?

Posted by: jmk55 | August 5, 2010 8:19 AM | Report abuse

To correct 11:07 pm who claimed "
at least 75% of violent crime now is by blacks."

The FBI says:
"Whites accounted for 58.9 and 67.9 percent of persons arrested for violent crimes and property crimes, respectively."
http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2007/arrests/index.html

Posted by: AndrewDover | August 5, 2010 8:22 AM | Report abuse

Eugene,

Would you make the same comments for a white Republican?

Thought so!

Posted by: 1951dewey | August 5, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

If Mr Rangel were a white Republican he's be the biggest sleazeball, right?
He'd be called everything from that to cheat, crook, and the Dems would love to point out that everyone should pay taxes fairly, right?

Get over it Robinson, he's a crook.

Posted by: jiboo | August 5, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

There is just something not right about this sudden rush for the blood of Rangel. Pelosi, Reid, Connell, McConnell, Kennedy, no problem. Forget the conflicts of interest with health care, the property tax questions, and go for Rangel.

Something's not right here, not at all.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Rangel is just the kind of congressman that America wants.
We have already turned the country over to the socialists what else is left. Why waste time on Rangel? Never thought I would see this day.

Posted by: biddle8788 | August 5, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

You column is a complete joke. If this man had an R after is name you would have him tried and hung already. There is no such thing as a small ETHICS violation. You my friend are exactly what is wrong with this country. Violations are violations it does not matter how big or small. He had live by the same rules you expect someone to live by that doesn't have his money and influence. You know one on the people who pays his salary. He is a disgrace to his position.

Posted by: mmartin3 | August 5, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Gene -- you are better than this. Your defense of this man is embarrassing. You neglected (conveniently) to mention the numerous undeclared bank accounts registered to Rangel containing hundreds of thousand of dollars. He never reported any of them. Where does a congressman get this kind of cash? He was CHAIR of Ways and Means. Are you kidding????

Posted by: dbunkr | August 5, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Robinson, you've sunk to a new low. Defending Rangel, and probably Waters next, just because of them being Dems and black. This guy is crooked as as snake, yet you defend him. Shocking.

If you want someone who deserves defending, how about all those people whose jobs have been moved offshore. There are many, many people who are bright, hard working, and through no fault of their own have lost their jobs due to perverse national policies that give an invitation on a gold platter for companies to move out of the US. Surely these people are much more worthy of your talents.

Posted by: A1965bigdog | August 5, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Is this The Onion?

Posted by: kbarker302 | August 5, 2010 7:35 AM | Report abuse
-----------------------

Best post in the thread!

Posted by: SmittyATL | August 5, 2010 8:31 AM | Report abuse

There are no regulations that I know of that forbid anyone from renting more than one rent regulated apartment. The complaint is that he didn't report the difference between the rent he pays and whatever the market rent may be as a gift from the landlord.

BTW, a landlord can charge less than the official regulated rent. Our landlord at the time charged us less the regulated rent by giving us 2 months rent free when the regulated price exceeded the market rate, i.e., he couldn't get people to pay the official rent but he kept the rent for the months we paid the official regulated rent. I also knew someone who paid only $80/month because the landlord admired him for his work for the poor. Neither he nor I had to report the differences as a gift on our taxes.

Posted by: fran426 | August 5, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Richard Nixon wasn't a crook, either. He told us so, explicitly.

Posted by: saxon-american | August 5, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Robinson continues to diminish himself and the Post with this kind of nonsense. The 41-page indictment of Rangel is very detailed and paints a picture of a public official mired in corruption. The concern Rangel should have is that the charges may eventually lead to a criminal prosecution for tax evasion and violation of various federal statutes. Robinson has been often accused of trafficking in race and race baiting. Is this yet another instance of just that?

Posted by: sightseer | August 5, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Stand with those you emulate and be known.

Posted by: BluePelican | August 5, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Sorry Eugene, Charlie has to go.

Posted by: jckdoors | August 5, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Other columns by Eugene Robinson:

“Vladimir Lenin is No Communist”

“Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – Just a Little Bitty Fellow”

“Megan Fox, Halle Barry, Eva Mendes – Hags, Hags, Hags”

Posted by: RRD1 | August 5, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

LOL!!! Robinson is now a graduate of the Obama school of nonsense. This will be the last time I read anything he writes.

Posted by: bluefish4187 | August 5, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Can somebody at the Post get rid of this old man Eugene Robinson who still lives in the 1960's.

Mr. Robinson is your typical hypocrite. When someone you don't like does something wrong he yells and screams, when someone he likes breaks the law by not paying taxes, it is no big deal.

Mr. Robinson, you are a national joke. If they built a Mount Rushmore to jokers your face would be right next to George W. Bush and Nancy Pelosi.

You are nothing more than a circus clown.

Posted by: KCV257 | August 5, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Imagine Mr. Robinson writing this post substituting the name "Gingrich" for "Rangel". Find that hard to fathom? Me too. This just shows that Mr. Robinson is ok with corruption, as long as it's his friends committing it.

Posted by: ccaridi | August 5, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Eugene - nice try, but I'm not buying it. Charlie is the epitome of an entrenched incumbent who feels the rules do not apply to himself. And this belief transcends race and party; there are many many more like him on both sides of the aisle who need to go.

Posted by: wadeb123 | August 5, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, you have now lost all credibility, even the small amount you had previously.

Posted by: shewholives | August 5, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

I am truly confused about the "charges" against Rangel and yet none against others who "use their influence". Perhaps it would be good to have a hearing and everything would come out so the public would know if what Eugene says is true or is there more to the charges.

I have admired Rangel for years - he's a Purple Heart and Bronze star recipient and most of his constituents (I'm not one) thinks he has represented them well.

Posted by: rlj1 | August 5, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

As mentioned, the Gingrich charges were similarly "yawn inducing". Did I miss the Robinson piece defending him?

As far as giving him a pass on the tax charges because he paid when caught, give me a break.

Posted by: edbyronadams | August 5, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Gene, by blinding defending this guy you feed all the right wingnut complaints about you. The one exception as you say was he did not report income on his federal tax return intentionally which is a crime!You say he filed amended returns. He did after he was caught!Look there are crooks in both parties. Arguing which party is more crooked is idiotic. If the dems have 90 crooks and repubs have 88 crooks does that seriously make the repubs the more honest party?

Posted by: commentname | August 5, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it more than likely is a duck.

Posted by: richard36 | August 5, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

E.R. wrote, "For one thing, Rangel’s so-called “villa” can’t be very palatial, since it cost only $82,750 when he bought it in 1987..."

Mr. Robinson,
Are you so blinded by your partisan loyalties that you don’t realize that an $82K home in the Dominican Republic in 1987 certainly can certainly be considered “very palatial” to a lot of people here in the U.S. I would venture to guess that almost all of Mr. Rangel’s constituents would agree, too (especially if they thought they were talking about MY $82K villa in the Dominican Republic … not his).

Posted by: MDDem1 | August 5, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Dare anyone say it?

Gene's opinions are biased; his judgement clouded and his analysis flawed by that 800 pound gorilla in our living rooms: race.

Yes, Gene, Justice is blind but anyone who understands both the technicalities and the preponderance of evidence in the 13 charges brought against Mr. Rangel understand he is, in fact, a crook; worse, he is the kind of crook who keeps commiting criminal acts because he believe he is too powerful to be caught, much less convicted within system where power and influence sometimes cut those in power some slack.

Most of us have seen/heard you attemp to defend some of the worst offenses and behaviors of our new President. You have become the Apologist in Chief for anytime his Administration or he falls a bit short. And, while he is no Charley Rangle by any stretch of the imagination, we believe the Washingon Post pays you to be objective as to why and how politicians behave. You, unfortunately, have a real blind spot when it comes down to evaluating persons of color. I am sure many will call me racist for stating this but to the readers of the WAPO who can connect the dots without bias and political correctness, it is a simple statement of fact.

I will bet if this bill of indictment had been filed against John Boehner we would be hearing a far different tune from you. But, fact is a crook is a crook regardless of party and race.

Posted by: bobfbell | August 5, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, would you write the same thing if Mr. Rangle were a white Republican? No, you wouldn't. You are not a journalist, sir. You are an advocate for your point of view.
Never mind the facts of the case. If Rangle were white, and a Republican, you would be demanding his resignation.
YOU should resign. You are worse than a useless journalist.

Posted by: maygarian | August 5, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Sure he is. Washington Post please fire this racist pos Eugene Robinson.

Posted by: geevill | August 5, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

"and I am a white, female Republican."
translatiion -I am really a black male racist liberal Democrat.

Posted by: geevill | August 5, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

It's ironic that Mr. Robinson's Charlie Rangel apology ended with the word "disgrace," because that's the one word that best describes the entire article. Unfortunately, it also aptly describes Mr. Robinson's career - which is buried in the past.

Taken at face value, I would laugh off Mr. Robinson's op-ed piece as just another liberal trying to defend the indefensible; just as I would any conservative doing the same for a republican crook.

However, I happened to catch Mr. Robinson on last night's Chris Matthews show, when he openly declared that race was a factor in both the Rangel and Maxine Waters cases.

I can accept the political biases of people like Mr. Robinson, because that's who they are and that's what we expect from them. But each time he and others like him use race to define their views it diminishes the effectiveness of their arguments.

Unfortunately for some, including Mr. Robinson, race has become the last line of defense in an argument that is otherwise indefensible. Maybe this represents progress in racial relations since the word is rarely used to describe real racial prejudice any more.

Posted by: JohnGalt10 | August 5, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

I have to say I find those accusing Eugene Robinson of racism hilarious. Obscene, but hilarious. That's the problem in America. Black oppression of white people.

A huge segment of this country has truly lost it, a pale-faced segment.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm a white man working with underprivileged adults, mostly blacks. A column like this just makes the divide between the races wider (see above) and makes my job and my clients' situation harder. When a black columnist defends a black legislator with no more justification than this, whites recoil and programs to help blacks lose support. Take a look at yourself, Mr. Robinson, and decide whether you're helping or hurting.

Posted by: albany1 | August 5, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Robinson must have been on the OJ jury: blacks are always not guilty.

Posted by: ravitchn | August 5, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Of course Charlie Rangle isn't a crook - he's black. If you called him a crook, you would be racist.

Posted by: mike85 | August 5, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Chill Robbie, actually Charlie sounds like a likable guy, but we have to go after him anyway, it's not personal, it's just politics.

Posted by: MikeMcLamara | August 5, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Let us not forget that there are people like John Ensign who have bigger problems, and are under less scrutiny by the press, and the public. Maybe all you haters should read up on all the news, not just what you want to spout off about.

Posted by: tojo45 | August 5, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

albany1:

When a black columnist defends a black legislator with no more justification than this, whites recoil and programs to help blacks lose support.
---------------------
Whites recoil? All of them? Well, browns are okay with it.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

fran426 wrote: "There are no regulations that I know of that forbid anyone from renting more than one rent regulated apartment."

Yes, there are such laws. You can only have the benefits of rent regulation if the apartment in question is your primary residence. That is true of both rent-controlled and rent-stabilized apartments. A landlord can evict you if he can establish non-primary residency. This is done every day in NYC.

Rent Stabilization Code section 2524.4:

"The owner shall not be required to offer a renewal lease to a tenant, or in hotels, to continue a hotel tenancy, and may commence an action or proceeding to recover possession in a court of competent jurisdiction, upon the expiration of the existing lease term, if any, after serving the tenant with a notice as required pursuant to section 2524.2 of this part, only on one or more of the following grounds:

"c) Primary residence. The housing accommodation is not occupied by the tenant, not including subtenants or occupants, as his or her primary residence, as determined by a court of competent jurisdiction; provided, however, that no action or proceeding shall be commenced seeking to recover possession on the ground that the housing accommodation is not occupied by the tenant as his or her primary residence unless the owner or lessor shall have given 30 days' notice to the tenant of his or her intention to commence such action or proceeding on such grounds. Such notice may be combined with the notice required by section 2524.2(c) (2) of this Title."

Posted by: Garak | August 5, 2010 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Race Card time.....

Posted by: georgedixon1 | August 5, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Marble mouth is right, all black congress members are innocent, OJ is innocent, the guy who gunned down 9 of his co-workers was just misunderstood.

Posted by: edwardlee35 | August 5, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

It should be obvious by now that common sense and Eugene Robinson parted company ages ago.

Rangel sat as chair of the Ways and Means committee writing the tax laws which victimizes the rest of us.

The fact that he believes he is exempt from these same laws is not forgetfulness or stupidity but an act of corruption.

Let him go to trial and defend himself. If he is guilty send him to jail for the load.

After all, isn't "Duke" Cunningham, a Republican, in jail for pretty much the same crime? Save the taxpayer some coin and make these two double up and share everything.

Posted by: krankyman | August 5, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Rangel IS a CROOK. So is Maxine Waters. Pulling out the race card is so overused that it is meaningless any more. The Democrats have used it so much without any reasonable proof they have made the charge useless. Eugene Robinson is a propagandist for liberals.

Posted by: kalamere | August 5, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Time for this tarnished idol to be put on the shelf.
He has obviously abused his power and position for many years. And now he wants to build a self aggrandizing monument to himself with tax payer funds. Besides all that he is 80 years old which is far to old to be in congress anyway.

Posted by: jrnberrycharternet | August 5, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Racist is a person who filters everything thru the prism of race. Robinson is a racist of the worst kind. BLACK Charlie Rangel avoids taxes, scams rent control apartments with the connivance of his wealthy landlord and makes false disclosures o his official forms. BUT Charlie didn't do much wrong and his plush villa probably isn't that nice anywhere.

MR ROBINSON- HAVE YOU NO SHAME?

Posted by: peteinny | August 5, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

No, of course he's not a crook.
And neither is Maxine Waters.
And Jaimie Foxx is not a racist
And Tawana Brawley was honest.
And Al Sharpton doesn't owe Steven Pagonas any money.
And OJ is looking for the real killer.
And, and, and...

Posted by: ej_smug | August 5, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm white and from upstate New York. I like Charlie Rangle. He stood up for what he believed in when it wasn't fashionable and other Democrats ran for cover. He served honorably under fire in Korea. Conservatives never seem to be concerned with chikenhawk Cheney's relationship with Haliburton.

Posted by: pjgalvin1 | August 5, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Strange comments on this board. Gene never brought up race in his comments and yet there are posters who've gone on racist rants questioning the motives of Mr. Robinson.

Some of you need to look inward.

Posted by: zzishate@yahoo.com | August 5, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Check out who ISN'T under investigation. And the list goes on....


Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is a sixteen-term member of Congress, representing the 41st district of California. Currently the ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, his ethics issues stem primarily from the misuse of his position as chairman of the committee to steer hundreds of millions of dollars in earmarks to family and friends in direct exchange for contributions to his campaign committee and political action committee. Rep. Lewis was included in CREW’s 2006, 2007, and 2008 reports on congressional corruption.

http://www.crewsmostcorrupt.org/summaries/lewis.php

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

I think all Eugene has done here is prove himself to be partisan hack.

Posted by: gorams1 | August 5, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

If we all stop reading Eugene's junk, he will go away.

Posted by: bmayhewbz@hotmail.com | August 5, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson, your gratuitous skewering of Sarah Palin several times only because of fear is now shamefully exceeded by this partisan defense of Rangel.
You should be summarily fired along with whatever nitwit editor bought into your fairy tale.
Facts: The House has ethics rules; Rangel violated those rules numerous times for 2-3 or more years. We are not talking about 2-3 omissions/lapses in judgement; we are talking about on-going violations of several rules by a "pro", someone who can't plead ignorance of the rules. Read the panel's report!!

A 20 year old military service member would be court-matialed for "conduct unbecoming" for light years less than what your friend Charlie has done

Posted by: oparoberts | August 5, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Really is disappointing to see this in a serious newspaper. Hard not to conclude Robinson holds black pols to a lower standard (ref Robinson's 6 Jan 06 piece on Marion Barry).

Is that really the best thing for their constituents? Don't black constituencies deserve public servants who respect laws and standards of fair play?

Posted by: realist351 | August 5, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Rangle is not likely to lose his job in congress. Sadly he likely has alot of others that do the same things that are members of congress. One is there for self-interest and they take care of themselves. Maxine Waters is another one take care of herself. Both are being investigated. Every few years is go via a new group of people serving in congress that are also serving themselves. Still in the case of both is seems more sloppiness than anything else.

Posted by: artg | August 5, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

FIRE Eugene, He is clearly a racist, Only defends Blacks and Dims! quote "rangel is not a crook, except for one charge," what a hoot, Blacks in congress get a free criminal charge?? whats next, every black gets one free criminal charge?

Eugene you are PATHETIC!

Posted by: morphy | August 5, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Whatever Charlie's got on you, Robinson, must be good enough to make you his apologist!

Posted by: RedGreenBlue | August 5, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Eugene even your cousin the President says Rangel should retire. Next you will write a paper on Maxine Waters who admits she is a Marxist. Come on Gene call a Spade a Spade. If this were Sarah Palin or some one else you would be all over it for conviction.

Posted by: pechins | August 5, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

MORE OF THE SAME. ROBINSON IS AN EXAMPLE OF SOMEONE WHO USES THE MEDIA TO EXPRESS HIS EXTREME BELIEFS. THERE CAN BE NO DOUBT THAT IF THIS WERE A WHITE REPUBLICAN THAT ROOBINSON WOULD BE HANGING HIM IN EFFIGY AS HE DID SO MANY TIMES WITH GEORGE BUSH. NOW YOU KNOW WHY I HAVE LITTLE RESPECT FOR THE POST.

Posted by: MALBENNET | August 5, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

He's a black liberal like me so he is not a crook. Move along.

Posted by: BenLaGuer | August 5, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Interesting..
The GOP threw everything at Charlie Rangle they could

except a sex scandal.

AND
What they have claimed there are no facts.
AND
anything that was missed was corrected.
AND
Before it is all over

Charlies Rangle will have the GOP balls in his hands.

BTW...
more Republican Shoes are going to fall.

The Big ones are OTW

ISA

Posted by: vettessman | August 5, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

This is just another shot a keeping the focus off of why this is all going down right now. Why not wait until February? Eugene is right we should look into this furthur and wait until late January or early February befor the trial takes place.

This is happening now so the criminals are not put in prison!

Posted by: greglaycharternet | August 5, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

As a 61 year old white man I am horrified and terribly dismayed at the postings on this site accusing you of being a racist because you wrote a column basically saying that Charlie Rangle suffers from the same hubris and, I would add, feelings of entitlement, as most other members of Congress.Everytime a member of Congress accepts a bundled contribution from a corporate or special interest that is an inherent conflict of interest and a strong argument for public financing of all elections.There is nothing even remotely "racist"in your opinion piece.Sure,readers can disagree with your defense of Rangle but calling you a racist is obscene.I've read the article several times and there is not one racist or anti white comment.To those accusing Mr. Robinson of racism,could you please point out exactly what is racist about this or any of the other columns Mr.Robinson has written?The degree of hatred and the lack of civility on some of the postings is truly disturbing.

Posted by: johnbird1 | August 5, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Here Again we have the press covering for the Democrats: "move on along folks, nothing to see her" Robinson says. He should be ashamed

Posted by: Sampy | August 5, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

As a 61 year old white man I am horrified and terribly dismayed at the postings on this site accusing you of being a racist because you wrote a column basically saying that Charlie Rangle suffers from the same hubris and, I would add, feelings of entitlement, as most other members of Congress.Everytime a member of Congress accepts a bundled contribution from a corporate or special interest that is an inherent conflict of interest and a strong argument for public financing of all elections.There is nothing even remotely "racist"in your opinion piece.Sure,readers can disagree with your defense of Rangle but calling you a racist is obscene.I've read the article several times and there is not one racist or anti white comment.To those accusing Mr. Robinson of racism,could you please point out exactly what is racist about this or any of the other columns Mr.Robinson has written?The degree of hatred and the lack of civility on some of the postings is truly disturbing.

Posted by: johnbird1 | August 5, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, you're delusional.

Posted by: jrwbrit1 | August 5, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

I very rarely agree with Mr. Robinson, but I do have a great deal of respect to Charlie Rangel.

He's one of the few black Congressmen who actually bridge the gap between blacks and whites of his generation. Sometimes the things Mr. Rangel says, or the way he says them, remind me of something my father would say, even though my father is a conservative working class white guy - a Reagan Democrat. He and Mr. Rangel share a certain practical worldview even if they would reach different decisions about what to do in the same situation.

So, I don't think Mr. Rangel should go down in history as a "crook" after a long career of not being a crook. That's not to say Mr. Rangel didn't do things that deserve punishment. Let's let the Committee in charge of that do its job.

The biggest issue Mr. Rangel raises for all of us - black and white- is that staying too long in political office, can skew your sense of reality and create a sense of entitlement. Sticking around in office too long was probably Mr. Rangel's biggest mistake. Likewise, being from a "safe" seat that insulated Mr. Ragel from competitive election campaigns also probably contributed to his growing sense of entitlement.

The lesson we should learn is that being a career politician and having a safe seat are detrimental to the character of even basically good people. Mr. Rangel is weak like all of us, but not a "crook."

Posted by: jfv123 | August 5, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, I just saw on TV that the President was asked about this column you wrote in defense of Charlie Rangel. He said:

"I don't have all the facts but what I can say is.....the House Ethics Panel actedly stupidly, filing this report with full knowledge that Charlie is a good Democrat and long standing congressman. It's a teachable moment and I am inviting the Panel to the WH for a beer summit".

Works for me!

Posted by: oparoberts | August 5, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Eugene: How intellectuallu dishonest are you??
Look in the mirror and ask youself this question. Your boy Charlies is a crook, so please stop justifying his grave, serious potentially illlegal activities.
If I did something similar to what Charlies has done, I would be in jail. So stop drinking the coolaid and save use from your BS.

Posted by: gkps | August 5, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Blacks will NEVER go against their "own kind". As Ms. Sherrod would say. Every day, there's a new O.J. VERDICT. Those Black Panthers? 1st Amendment. The charges against Rangel and that Witch from Oakland? Racism. Obama is KILLING THIS COUNTRY? Racism.
I said it when this PUNK was running for President. If he's elected, the U.S. will look like New York City, under Mayor David Dinkins. And here we are.

Posted by: GoomyGommy | August 5, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Tax cheats are not crooks? $600K in assets not dislosed? Please Mr. Robinson, don't try to apologize for Rep. Rangel. Your credibility has taken a real hit with this column.

Posted by: jwyzalek | August 5, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Check out who ISN'T under investigation. And the list goes on....


Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is a sixteen-term member of Congress, representing the 41st district of California. Currently the ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, his ethics issues stem primarily from the misuse of his position as chairman of the committee to steer hundreds of millions of dollars in earmarks to family and friends in direct exchange for contributions to his campaign committee and political action committee. Rep. Lewis was included in CREW’s 2006, 2007, and 2008 reports on congressional corruption.

http://www.crewsmostcorrupt.org/summaries/lewis.php

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Eugene represents today's liberal mindset, our ethics are good as long as they serve our way of thinking. Everyone else is just victimizing us. Rangel has demonstrated a total lack of ethics and a terrible hubris. But then Eugene thinks it is okay for a liberal to have this but let one conservative do the same and there is hell to pay. Eugene's article demonstrates one of the reason that infects society today...situational ethics. It's okay if I am doing it but not you.

Posted by: staterighter | August 5, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

All right, there’s one exception: On his federal tax returns, Rangel failed to declare rental income from a vacation property he owns in the Dominican Republic -- a mortifying embarrassment for the one-time chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, which writes the tax code.
____
In other words.. He is a CROOK!!! Otherwise it's like saying except for the coverup over Watergate Nixon was not a crook. Yet pretty sure Gene wanted Nixon to step down. Then again Nixon wasn't a Liberal or Black...

Posted by: sovine08 | August 5, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Robinson just put himself in the Baghdad Bob Hall of Fame. You are an absolute joke, sir. The Washington Post should be incredibly embarrassed to have such a dishonest hack on its staff. You owe your position to your race--don't forget that. You help fill up their quota.

Posted by: petmal1212 | August 5, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Charles Rangel is an entitled opportunist. While he has done a lot of good, it is now time for him to resign.

Posted by: petemik | August 5, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Eugene: How intellectually dishonest are you?? Look in hte mirror and ask yourself this question. Please stop justifying Charlie Crook's serious and illegal activities. If I had done something similar to what Charlies has done I would be in jail.
Do not think that we the american public are stupid. Please get off your high horse and stop this BS. We have had it from crooks in the congress.

Posted by: gkps | August 5, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

CHECK OUT WHO ISN'T UNDER INVESTIGATION. And the list goes on....BEFORE ANY MORE OF YOU OPPRESSED WHITE PEOPLE accuse Eugene of racism (LOL), read, please.


Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is a sixteen-term member of Congress, representing the 41st district of California. Currently the ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, his ethics issues stem primarily from the misuse of his position as chairman of the committee to steer hundreds of millions of dollars in earmarks to family and friends in direct exchange for contributions to his campaign committee and political action committee. Rep. Lewis was included in CREW’s 2006, 2007, and 2008 reports on congressional corruption.

http://www.crewsmostcorrupt.org/summaries/lewis.php

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Not one comment about trading personal donations for tax legislation favors. I'm sure your next piece will be on Nixon not really being a crook. . he just had some "technical" issues.

Posted by: sarno | August 5, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Here we have a classic example of a hack journalist defining ethics down for pure political and possibly racial reasons.

I await the next column which will no doubt exonerate Maxine Waters.

If journalists won't hold politicians to ethical standards, what hope is there to ever improve the rats nest that is Washington?

Posted by: theduke89 | August 5, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

It is so evident that this country is in real trouble! Even the most reasonable logical proposition's (that's what Eugene proposed) turn into race laced, off the subject insults. Some have no problem with the 8 years of lies and deception that our government led with, but only ridicule the current government now. With literally no facts to support, other than the usual; he's not American, he's a socialist never mind they couldn't define the meaning, or barely spell it! We are in trouble and no other country is responsible its right there sitting next to you on the bus, train or plane or in that mirror.....

Posted by: guerridolee | August 5, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Robinson, it seems that you are totally incapable of admitting a person who happens to be black is capable of any wrong doing. This is not about race but it is about a Senator who is one of the good old boys who has been there far too long and thinks he is above the law and neither is Maxine Waters with her long history of playing the race card. This is a country that sees everyone as equal and equally responsible for their actions. Whether it is Obama or any Senator regardless of their "color" we are sick of the protections for minority groups who are kept from being accountable and becomming one with all by the drum beat of special privileges for them.

Posted by: katie6 | August 5, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

As a 49 year old white male I'm not suprised at your double standard Eugene. I've seen it time and time again.

If this had been a white republican congressman he'd have been brutalized by you and Ezra Klein as an example of the politics of old (rich, fat, white guys) and the need for immediate change (minorities).

However, in this case tax cheating is ok because it wasn't that much. I mean after all, the villa wasn't even "palatial".

The rent control thing? So what. It's not like he's the first to ever look for a "loop hole" right?

What a disgusting column.

Posted by: IUT1 | August 5, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

CHECK OUT WHO ISN'T UNDER INVESTIGATION. And the list goes on....BEFORE ANY MORE OF YOU OPPRESSED WHITE PEOPLE accuse Eugene of racism (LOL), read, please.


Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is a sixteen-term member of Congress, representing the 41st district of California. Currently the ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, his ethics issues stem primarily from the misuse of his position as chairman of the committee to steer hundreds of millions of dollars in earmarks to family and friends in direct exchange for contributions to his campaign committee and political action committee. Rep. Lewis was included in CREW’s 2006, 2007, and 2008 reports on congressional corruption.

http://www.crewsmostcorrupt.org/summaries/lewis.php

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Eugene Robinson:what a hack.

The mystery as to why the Washington Post is losing millions can be considered solved.

Charlie is a shakedown artist pure and simple. He doesn't care about anyone other than himself. The bullshit about him looking out for his constituents is exposed by the fact that poor people were unable to live in those rent controlled apartments that he was illegally using.

Posted by: billtoye | August 5, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

As far as I'm concerned Rangel deserves to share a cell with Wesley Snipes...

Posted by: sovine08 | August 5, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson,
Sir, if you keep this up you are never going to be invited to president elect Palin's inauguration bash!.

Posted by: travisg2 | August 5, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

WOW
Gulliani's Daughter is a practicing REPUBLICAN..

Got caught Stealing.

Classic Republican
GOT CAUGHT - AGAIN..!!
STEALING - AGAIN !!!

ISA

Posted by: vettessman | August 5, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

would you have the same view if the crimes were committed by say John Boehner or Michelle Bachmann? Why of course not because they're not black.

Posted by: hokie92 | August 5, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

As a 61 year old proud to be an American white male,I am truly horrified and terribly dismayed by the hatred and the accusations of racism hurled by many of the posters on this site at Mr. Robinson.Mr. Robinson is basically saying that Rangel,like many other members of Congress,black and white,Republican and Democrat, suffers from hubris and a sense of entitlement.In fact,everytime a Congressman solicits or accepts large bundled contributions from corporate and special interest there's an inherent conflict of interest and a strong argument for public financing of all elections.Sure,disagree with Robinson's opinions,but to call him a racist is absurd and disgusting.I've read his piece several times and there is nothing even remotely anti-white or racist in the article.Would those accusing Mr.Robinson of racism point out exactly what is racist in this or any other column he has written?

Posted by: johnbird1 | August 5, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

You call yourself a journalist? This is bias at its worst.

Posted by: newbalances | August 5, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

One would have thought that Mr. Robinson would resist embarrassing himself defending a law breaker based on his race but one would be wrong. One could also entertain that Robinson's employer would perhaps have the integrity and common sense to protect Robinson from himself but one would be wrong again. The nation has moved on and away from racism judging people on their actions rather than the color of their skin, but our political and media class are still wallowing in the sordid past and refuse to join up with modern thought. That's a big reason for why they are held in such contempt by the American people.

Posted by: lavistabb | August 5, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

zzishate,

we question his motives because (having watched his antics for over 10 years) we have SEEN Mr Robinson defend CRIMINALS & BIGOTS of "the ruling class" & African-Americans, solely because of his PREJUDICES. = reference: BIGOTS, "you will know them by their acts", as Dr King used to say.

any person who excuses/defends immoral, unethical, dishonest & UNLAWFUL behavior because of the color of someone's skin is a RACIST & nothing more than that.

as i said earlier, IF Mr Robinson or I had done EXACTLY the same things that Rangel has been accused of (Rangel has not, to my knowledge, been indicted, much less tried in a court of law for ANY infraction.- one HOPES that he will be indicted/tried/convicted/imnprisoned, IF he is CONVICTED!), we would ALREADY be IN federal prison, as we are "nobodies". = FACT!

those people, who are of "THE RULING CLASS", receive DIFFERENT & BETTER treatment than the rest of us "peasants" ====> that's why there is a QUIET REVOLUTION coming to the USA in about 90 days. - we TEA PARTY folks will turn "our masters" out of office on NOV 2, 2010 & continue the purge in 2012 & beyond.= MANY of the DIMocRATS & RINOs are about to be "seeking other employment".

to ALL: despite the HUNDREDS of hate-FILLED LIES, told by the DIMocRATS, LEFTISTS & their buddies in "the main-SLIME media", the TEA PARTY is about "throwing off the yoke" of our SELF-appointed, arrogant, "masters" & returning this country to HONEST, decent, democratic government. - the TEA PARTY populist movement is "about" nothing more than that.

to anyone here, who may not believe me, may i simply say: COME & SEE for yourself. you will be warmly welcomed at TEA PARTY rallies, regardless of "who/what you may be", as long as you are PRO-American.

yours, TN46
coordinator, CCTPP

Posted by: texasnative46 | August 5, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Another glaring example of Robinson's racism. In Robinson's world the rules don't apply to blacks.

Posted by: tom56 | August 5, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Oh and by the way..the congressman is being accused of "Ethics" violations..not a criminal issue.
Ethics..you've heard of them right?
Oh, you haven't!
Well, that explains a great deal here.

Posted by: travisg2 | August 5, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Oh and by the way..the congressman is being accused of "Ethics" violations..not a criminal issue.
Ethics..you've heard of them right?
Oh, you haven't!
Well, that explains a great deal here.

Posted by: travisg2 | August 5, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

what a hypocrite you are, eugene...poor charlie rangel, the eternal "victim"

Posted by: Please_Fix_VAs_Roads | August 5, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Robinson: You are such a hack. If the situation were reversed -- a white Republican charged with the VERY same ethic violations -- you'd be calling for his head. And you'd be saying it every night on that stupid show you go on every night, with that stupid host, Keith Olbermann, where you always say, "Good evening, Keith." You are nothing more than a left-wing political hack. No one takes your op-ed's seriously, because they are nothing more than shill pieces from the DNC. Fitting that you work for MSNBC and WashPost.

Posted by: mal33 | August 5, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Gene,

You left out the word "ordinary".

As in, "Charlie Rangel is no ORDINARY crook."

4 RC appts in NYC - ummm, criminal.

Not declaring taxes on rental income in Punta Cana (shades of Leona Helmsley) - criminal.

Putting the bite on AIG when they were in the middle of financial meltdown - appalling.

Claiming he didn't know tax implications on condo in PC because "everyone down there speaks Spanish" - appalling & hypocritical (can you imagine if a Republican said this - they'd brand him a racist!).

Charlie kinda reminds me of someone...wait a minute...the guy he replaced, Adam Clayton Powell!

Posted by: drewhome | August 5, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Rangel is not a crook. OJ was innocent. Duke lacrosse players should be put away. Obama is transparent and post racial. Eugene, have some Kool-Aid.

Posted by: moron1 | August 5, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Rangel is not a crook. Neither is Maxine. Or Rostenkoswki. Or Trafficante. Or O'Dwyer. Or Adam Clayton Powell. Or Wm. Jefferson. How do I know? Because Democrat pols are never crooked. Left wing pundits like Robinson always tell the truth. Sure.

Posted by: mhr614 | August 5, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

It's sad to see the double standard bigotry of Robinson in print in the WAPO. Rangle is a poverty pimp criminal who thinks the law doesn't apply to him. Ribinsin is merely his court jester.

Posted by: carlbatey | August 5, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Last I heard it was illegal to buy prostitutes.....

Posted by: jimbobkalina | August 5, 2010 4:12 AM | Report abuse

___________________________

You know, I tried telling Barney Frank that, but the guy just wouldn't listen to me.

Next!

Posted by: etpietro | August 5, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Wasn't Rangel also accused of trading tax-related earmarks worth billions for donations to his institute? This is the new form of graft that Congress has discovered. Trade the public's money for donations to a non-profit (at pennies on the dollar because who cares, it's the public's money). Of course, when one looks closer at these so-called non-profits, it almost always turns out that they are set-up to benefit the politician and/or his/her family/friends. The non-profits employ relatives and cronies, pay for travel, provide office space, host events, etc. The whole non-profit thing is just the latest form of scam -- and what makes it all the more annoying is that the politician will crow about the "good" he/she is doing for society by "supporting" the non-profit. Gene Robinson is one of the more intelligent and thoughtful commentators, but he's got a blind spot a mile wide when it comes to Rangel and others of his ilk.

Posted by: chris_zz | August 5, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I am deeply embarrassed that any citizen of a democracy would defend an elected official who has broken numerous ethics rules. If Mr. Rangel's career ends in disgrace, it shall be no one's fault but his own. If the swamp is to be drained, excuses cannot be made; even the appearance of unethical behavior must be treated like the plague.

Posted by: westerngrizzly | August 5, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, what would your verdict be if this wsa Sarah Palin?????

Posted by: moron1 | August 5, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Rangel may not be a crook, but he's not being very smart right now. If his career ends up being ruined, it will because of his stubborn refusal to accept a well deserved (and minor) reprimand and move on.

Posted by: Steve851 | August 5, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Gene, you are right, this whole ethics thing is old school. Using Congress for your own gain, that's what it is really about. If BP donates to my Rangel school I'll even vote to forgive the whole spill thing.

Posted by: sarno | August 5, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm surprised that Robinson has been so blinded by his affection for Rangel that he cannot see the moral dimension of his abuses. Rangel, a wealthy African-American, represents Harlem, the iconic African-American neighborhood with so much poverty and many poor and disadvantaged African-American residents. Rent control laws are intended to ensure that the poor and disadvantaged can afford housing. Yet in the midst of this poverty, the district's wealthy African-American congressman appropriated for his own personal use not one but four rent-controlled apartments, apartments that could have housed four needy families, while he could easily have afforded to buy space at market rates? That may or may not be criminal (I'm not familiar with the laws), but it is morally repugnant. It is evidence of character flaws so deep as to disqualify Rangel from holding high office and from representing the needs of his poor and disadvantaged constituents.

The fact that many others violate rent control laws is irrelevant. Not only do two wrongs not make a right, but those others have not been charged with representing the interests of those who need rent control in Congress. Charlie Rangel has obviously forgotten why he was sent to Washington. He should return to Harlem and spend some time visiting homeless shelters, looking into the faces of people who could be living in rent-controlled apartments but for his selfishness.

Posted by: jimcohen | August 5, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Earth to Gene black members of Congress don't get a free pass anymore.

Posted by: FLvet | August 5, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Again, just the perfect argument for term limits. Mr. Rangel and many others always think they are above the law. I don't understand when they can pay their taxes they don't. There are so many other Americans who struggle, like we did, paying taxes on our business and California Workman's comp, that finally put us under. There was no break for us, why should their be for a guy who has multiple rental properties. Gee, I would love to see his paycheck get garnished.

Posted by: ClassicCaddy | August 5, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Robinson you are a total fool. The only reason
charlie Rangel paid up what he owed on taxes is because he got caught. He's a crook and should have had his behind nailed long ago for income tax evasion. Same wih Timmy Geithner. Scumbags all.

Posted by: RFN8143 | August 5, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, right, black people have never committed any crimes.

And, of course, it is "racist" to accuse any saintly black person of any crime.

Rangel and all the other liberal losers should pay reparations to us for all their crimes.


Posted by: Jerzy | August 5, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

White people can't get a break in this country. That's the sad fact. White people are oppressed all over the world. Jes' sumpin' awful.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

given that every article you write qualifies as a 'mortifying embarrassment', i think something a little stronger has to be applied to a tax cheat tax writer from the tax and spend party.

Posted by: dummypants | August 5, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Nice try Eugene. If this guy were a white Republican, you would be all over him.

Posted by: VaBroker | August 5, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, you just plain stink. I thought it couldn't go lower, but it did. Your a racist, meaning that you view the world through the prism of your racial bias. You defend Charlie Rangel because he is black and liberal. Period. End. If this same man, guilty of the same illegalities were white and conservative, you'd be saying much different things here. You are a joke, a old racial fool teetering on the edge of sanity. When Rangel receives his just punishment, I'll be here it to rub your nose in it.....

Posted by: subframer | August 5, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, you just plain stink. I thought it couldn't go lower, but it did. You're a racist, meaning that you view the world through the prism of your racial bias. You defend Charlie Rangel because he is black and liberal. Period. End. If this same man, guilty of the same illegalities were white and conservative, you'd be saying much different things here. You are a joke, a old racial fool teetering on the edge of sanity. When Rangel receives his just punishment, I'll be here it to rub your nose in it.....

Posted by: subframer | August 5, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

That's the problem with many in the black community, they always make excuses for their failures and predictably equate accountability with victimhood. Nothing knew from this hack.

Posted by: hared | August 5, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Eugene,

Charlie would pawn your pulitzer.

Posted by: newzaroo | August 5, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

I agree with Robinson: Rangel's no crook.

Is Obama trying to get rid of those who originally chose to support Hillary?

Posted by: tina5 | August 5, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

That's the problem with many in the black community, they always make excuses for their failures and predictably equate accountability with victimhood. Nothing knew from this hack.

Posted by: hared
--------------------
You must be an anthropologist. What is the problem with the white community? The brown?
Yellow? Red?

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Thank you, Mr. Robinson! Yours is the voice of reason and rationality. Hard to find these days. Politics being what it is.

REAL corruption is when you use your office to sell your votes for cash, which some members of Congress have done. Take the extreme example of Republican Duke Cunningham, still in jail after making millions from contractors he helped. Or Tom DeLay, Republican Speaker, who handed out cash from Lobbyists on the floor of Congress to gain votes! That's the kind of thing that is criminal and harmful to us. AND THAT IS NOT WHAT RANGEL DID.

Rangel's egotism is not in the same ballpark AT ALL. His follies, though stupid and regrettable are not criminal or harmful. How many members of Congress would have to stand trial if they were held accountable for mistakes they later corrected (tax returns for instance)? Lots and lots.

Posted by: baileywick | August 5, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

What Mr. Robinson saying is the truth? His view are shared by majority African American (we all remember OJ Samson case) and there thinking is that any time a Black politicians or any well know African American charge with anything, it is automatically a setup by the white establishment!! I am still surprised that CBC/ NAACP and others have not came forward to defend him as of yet?

Posted by: akhan4 | August 5, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

What Mr. Robinson saying is the truth? His view are shared by majority African American (we all remember OJ Samson case) and there thinking is that any time a Black politicians or any well know African American charge with anything, it is automatically a setup by the white establishment!! I am still surprised that CBC/ NAACP and others have not came forward to defend him as of yet?

Posted by: akhan4 | August 5, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Is Robinson is a racist or just stupid?

Posted by: Jmacaco4 | August 4, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

Why pick one?

He's a stupid racist.

Posted by: restonhoops | August 5, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson is black. Rangel is black. Any questions? Robinson is an out and out racist. "Rangel apparently was careless". Oh, so that's what Robinson tells us why he is not guilty. I don't normally read Robinson's racist rants but I had to open this item up just based on the heading. He didn't disappoint. Robinson is a first class racist working for a first class liberal rag.

Posted by: rchaa27aa | August 5, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Gene,
I hate to tell you this but Charlie "sleezeball" Rangle's filling of ammended tax returns with interest payments and penalties is an admission of guilt.
You're liberal, biased bleeding heart concern that it would be a crime if Rangle's long career ended in disgrace is too late, because he already is a disgrace.

Posted by: gman6 | August 5, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Representative Rangel is not accused of hubris, he is accused of misusing his office to help satisfy that hubris. There is a big difference that Robinson seems to ignore.

Posted by: StephenL | August 5, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Numbnut,

He sold his vote on tax legislation for a "donation" to his CCNY center. That is the lowest, dirtiest thing a politician can do. Just as bad as cash in the freezer. Wise up and see the truth.

Posted by: Schwabcycler | August 5, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

CHECK OUT WHO ISN'T UNDER INVESTIGATION. And the list goes on....BEFORE ANY MORE OF YOU OPPRESSED WHITE PEOPLE accuse Eugene of racism (LOL), read, please.


Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA) is a sixteen-term member of Congress, representing the 41st district of California. Currently the ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, his ethics issues stem primarily from the misuse of his position as chairman of the committee to steer hundreds of millions of dollars in earmarks to family and friends in direct exchange for contributions to his campaign committee and political action committee. Rep. Lewis was included in CREW’s 2006, 2007, and 2008 reports on congressional corruption.

http://www.crewsmostcorrupt.org/summaries/lewis.php
----------------------
Gee, I guess the Black Power Structure just somehow overlooked all the white crooks in Congress.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

The more I read and listen to Robinson, the more puzzled I am as to why he ever received a Pulitzer Prize. Affirmative Action, at work?

Posted by: Diogenes | August 5, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Robinson and Dionne are why I no longer read the Post regularly. You guys are so totally out to lunch!

Posted by: FormerPostReader2 | August 5, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Eugene (I see WHITE people) Robinson is excusing Rangel simply because he is black, and in general the bar is set lower for blacks (ie PBO.)

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | August 5, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Right Eugene I suppose if he were a white Republican you would still defend him. Bull you are a racist Eugene plain and simple. You will defend any black person no matter what they have done just because they are black. Keep that stupid grin on your face fool. Obama is causing a real split in the races and last look is this is not Africa and we outnumber you by a great deal. So keep pushing us and calling us names there is a limit to our patience.

Posted by: harley2002 | August 5, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Ok, little children, move on along now...noting to she here with Rangel, move on along says Robinson.

Posted by: Sampy | August 5, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Robinson is a racist but a question is failing to pay taxes against the law. If so HE IS A CROOK. to make it worse Rangel heads the tax committee.

Robinson is why we know ther eis a double standard. He is a practing racist. If a black did something it is excusable. He hurst the black community by not being equallly minded.

Posted by: laketruth1 | August 5, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson,

Oh. Please. Even though I often disagreed with you, I always respected you. If a Republican Congressman had ethics charges levied against him, in part, for soliciting $30 million (!) donations to the AIG (yes, that AIG) Center at his own center for "public service" you would be howling about the unseemliness of it all. "Those terrible Republicans!" But, since it's a Dem, you rush to defend. Hackery. Pure hackery. Thought you were better than this.

Posted by: CW13 | August 5, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Reading the comments posted here reminds me of what is so great about America and the technology available today. The exchange of ideas presented in this format is enthralling.

As to the content, it is not exactly a news flash that Eugene Robinson is an apologist for all things liberal. I watch and occasionally read him to get a feel for how the other side thinks.

Posted by: expostcarrier1951 | August 5, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Reading the comments posted here reminds me of what is so great about America and the technology available today. The exchange of ideas presented in this format is enthralling.

As to the content, it is not exactly a news flash that Eugene Robinson is an apologist for all things liberal. I watch and occasionally read him to get a feel for how the other side thinks.

Posted by: expostcarrier1951 | August 5, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

$83,000 home in the U.S. in 1987 would be considered pretty nice, and up until a few years ago would have been worth probably at least 5x that. Imagine what type of home that would buy in the Dominican Republic, i'm just guessing it isn't some 1-2 bedroom shack. Please don't insult our intelligence by saying that hiding that for 20 years is not a crime.

Posted by: Steveo11 | August 5, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

horsefeathers

Posted by: sailor3 | August 5, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

I agree with previous comments that were the official involved a Republican, there would be no end of "throw the bum out".

Posted by: Natalia3 | August 5, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson's reality is happily not mine. Rangel, Waters, and Robinson make me sick, being a member of Congress is not Black Liberation Theology...it's not "anything goes."

Posted by: pamschuh9 | August 5, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

He may not be a crook,but he dam sure borders on corrupt

Posted by: ctharwick | August 5, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

rangel is not a crook.... and obama was experienced enough to be president...

Eugene covers for black men.

disgusting

Posted by: newagent99 | August 5, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

It's a reprimand offense not a lynching matter. You shlould be castigating the NAACP and National Urban League for their opposition to charter schools. That's truly a crime.

Posted by: DANSHANTEAL1 | August 5, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Hahahahahaha...hahahahahahahaha. How does this clown have a job...really...seriously.

Posted by: blushark1 | August 5, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Boy, I wish I had gotten the exclusive franchise on kneepads BEFORE Robinson wrote this piece. He must have rooms full of them to write something like this.

But don't take everything Robinson says here at his word. The "rent-controlled apartment" is actually FOUR rent-controlled apartments (no individual is supposed to have more than one); I believe all four are in the same building; and at least two of them are adjacent (in which case Rangel has a very large apartment).

And maybe Rangel has filed amendments to his tax returns, but that doesn't mean he was honest, it just means he got caught. EVERYONE has the right to file amended returns; the question is, was it a justifiable mistake that led to the amendment, or was it an attempted fraud? Robinson won't address that.

And an $83,000 villa in the Dominican Republic in 1987 is probably worth nearly half-a-million today. Robinson should have access to those numbers, but the fact that he doesn't give them to us makes me feel he really doesn't want us to see them.

Methinks Mr. Robinson is really a slimy character.

Posted by: Nick_in_Alexandria | August 5, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Wow, Mr. Robinson. That column was inept and intellectually and morally bankrupt.

Posted by: linroy62 | August 5, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

This kind of shamless display of racism is why Obama will be the last black president.

Posted by: borntoraisehogs | August 5, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Rangel's service and accomplishments are irrelevent to the issue at hand. Are saying that it is okay to ignore the rules/law if you are a politician or black but everyone else must adhere to those rules and obey the law? Where is your sense of equal protection and equal accountablity under the law?

Inequality and injustice that blacks routinely seem to raise and complain about ...
but only when it is not a black involved, is not equality in my view. Mr. Rangel
ignored the rules and rightfully should be held to account. Carelessness/ignorance
of the law / rules does not excuse the behavior, especially when one is involved
in crafting the law (tax code).


Posted by: CraigsterTexas | August 5, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is black, a Democrat and Charlie Rangel is your buddy. Period.

These commentors point out that if a Republican had done this, you would be all over him/her but because of the truth above you're going to knee-jerki jump to his defense. I admire your gift of writing and I try not to miss your columns but your defense of certain individuals and situations sometimes is so racially slanted and I honestly believe that you've done it for so long that you believe that you're just unbiasedly commenting.

You're not, Gene.

OK, you've done your part for your buddy, now, perhaps you should let it go or maybe someone will say that you use your column for a bully pulpit and abusing your power. Imagine that!

And yes, $87K would have bought you a "palatial" mansion in the Dom Rep in the 80's.

Posted by: rperk995 | August 5, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse


It has become quite clear from all the right wing trolls posting here that now, in 2010, someone is a racist if they are a democrat and have dark skin. This is just crazy. I am so so tired of the right wing.

Posted by: Concerned49 | August 5, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Rangel is not a full-time crook like the JOKER, but he definitely playing and abusing the system for personal gain and AVOIDING his full tax liabilities and duties!

NOT ACCEPTABLE!

We the public need a REVOLUTION in ACCOUNTING for ALL our elected officials by turning over their RIGHTS at time of entering office, by allowing FULL ACCESS to their government and personal records!

You don't like it, walk away and go pound sand, if you like!

Posted by: theaz | August 5, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

So, Mr Robinson, to hold Mr Rangel to a higher standard is unfair? He asked for that higher standard when he became a Congressman. It is especially unseemly and hypocritical to break the tax laws when you are Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee. Did he really pay "all penalties"? I don't believe that is true. He paid the tax and interest, without penalty.

If Mr Rangel cannot accept the responsibility that came with his office he should resign. Mr Robinson shows very poor judgment and even poorer writing skills. The WAPO can do better.

Posted by: donhinds | August 5, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

The only yawn inducer around here is you, Eugene, in your infallible "anything a black person does is justified" racism. Fortunately, you are so consistent that everyone knows you're a racist - so they mostly ignore you.

Posted by: hill_marty | August 5, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

While it's never wrong to disagree with someone, the nastiness and vitriol in some of these posts is almost unbelievable. I do have a question for those of you who are so worked up over this issue. Did you post comments on WaPo message boards lambasting Vitter, Ensign, Delay, or any other Republicans that have been caught with either their pants down or hand in the cookie jar in recent years? Thought not.

Posted by: bienefes | August 5, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I think some of you folks mistakenly thought Eugene's thread was a virtual Klan meeting.

Go to Stormfront, please, and find your friends.

Posted by: farnaz_mansouri2 | August 5, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Hey Eugene, I haven't seen your column yet discussing Barack Obama calling all black people mongrels. How do you feel about that?

Posted by: robtr | August 5, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Robinson is living proof that when you have no valid argument, you play the race card and blame the other guy for the ills of the less fortunate. If Rangel is not a crook, then he is senile and suffering from a terrible case of forgetfulness. How else can you explain the Chairman of Ways and Means, not knowing about or "forgetting" to pay taxes on property? In either case, he has outserved his usefulness and needs to be retired. C'mon Robinson, this is a new low, even for you. It's amazing that people like you cry for equality, fight for it and even die for it, yet, when you and your kind are treated equal you cry foul and brand everyone who looks different from you as a racist. It doesn't work anymore and is getting nauseatingly trite. Quit whining and join the mainstream of Americans who have earned what they have through hardwork, sacrifice and discipline. While you are at it, seek a new livelihood, you stink at this one.

Posted by: desertbells | August 5, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

@Mr. Robinson,
Ignoring the use of rent-controlled apartments as offices, which I consider to be an egregious ethical offense, let's just look at the fact that a member of the Ways and Means committee did not correctly file and pay the taxes he owed. It is my opinion that anyone who is going to write tax law for the rest of us must be completely and unarguably above-board, honest and current on his taxes, else it damages the reputation of the tax system in this country. For his failures in this regard alone, I would insist on is removal from the House due to the harm to its reputation he thus caused.
As for the property in question, apparently you are going to ignore inflation, which would raise the current value considerably, as well as the fact that in 1987 the property values in the location discussed tended to be slightly depressed, AND the fact that we do not know whether he got a sweetheart deal on the property, due to his position in Congress. Until such things are examined in detail, I am NOT going to conclude that the property issues in themselves are trivial.
And, as for you, the fact that you conduct such a defense of Mr. Rangel, has cost you some respect among the readers of the Washington Post, so I suggest you do the necessary investigative reporting with regard to the full thirteen charges, and then write whatever defense you wish, with inclusion of all the material you examined weighed, measured and aired in public. It might restore a bit of lost credibility on your part.

Posted by: darkmatter1 | August 5, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Robinson! Listen UP: name one, repeat: ONE member of the congressional black caucus who doesn't steal the US taxpayer blind. "Reparations"?

Robinson! Now that Obamacare is in place get yourself some meds. No, not street meds, the evil corporate pharma kind.

Posted by: craigslsst | August 5, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Americans like to give people the benefit of a doubt. But, unfortunately, Robinson refuses to give anyone else a remote chance. He takes a few signs at a Tea Party rally and labels all the people racists. He attacks Palin and gives her zero slack. He attacks conservatives and gives them zero slack. Look at all his articles and they are all about hate. Now he wants to defend someone with 13 questionable actions and he wants to be understanding? Robinson is a hate monger and typical liberal. He plays the race card, class warfare card and if those don't work, he smears those who disagree with him. Not unlike his fellow writers at WaPo and Journolist.

Posted by: Tostitos | August 5, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Congressman Rangel is guilty of assuming entitlement is a reward for all positive accomplishments of his career. He did it because he could. WRONG!!!

Roman Pulunski, movie director, has a remarkable body of work, tremendous accomplishments. It does not erase that he raped a 13 year girl. He did it because he could.

Posted by: flameforest | August 5, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I first met Charlie Rangel in 1985, when I was an escort officer for a Congressional Delegation going to Moscow. I found him to be down-to-earth, and a genuinely nice guy, who had a tendency to get a little too exuberant and to lose his discipline. For example, while the rest of the delegation was talking with Foreign Minister Gromyko, Charlie was busy videotaping the inside of the Kremlin, to the horror of his KGB minders. Charlie just got carried away. When he finally showed up at the meeting site, he focused his camera on Gromyko and said "Smile!" Gromyko, ever dour, was not amused, but the rest of us were convulsed with laughter. Later, I had to shush Charlie when he insisted on talking with me while I was trying to take notes. Charlie is the only Congressman I ever told to shut up, and he took it with good grace. My reading of Charlie, years later, is that he is a good man and a good Congressman who sometimes gets a little careless. He's no criminal, and should not be treated as such. I hope that the Congress will be lenient in its decision.

Posted by: shoeone | August 5, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson, I am a black New Yorker of Caribbean descent and I think Charlie Rangel is a crook. As a public official who writes the laws of the land, if you do not pay your taxes you are a crook. I do not live in Rangel's district but I can tell you this if I did,I would not vote for the man even if he paid me a million dollars. He needs to bow out and go and live in his villa in the Dominican Republic.

Posted by: clarendon67 | August 5, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Robinson has lost his mind and the WASHPOST still prints his mindless comments. I wonder what his opinion would be if the cuplrit were white?

Posted by: rustynailx | August 5, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Not surprisingly, Mr. Robinson is unable, or unwilling, to distinguish between ethics and the criminal law. Ethical precepts include avoiding the appearance of impropriety. Certainly, Mr. Rangel has failed to avoid the appearance of impropriety.
Of course, if it was a Republican who did the same exact thing as Mr. Rangel, I suspect Mr. Robinson would be saying something like "where there is smoke, there is fire." Bad financial disclosures, failing to pay taxes, failing to declare income, the appearance of selling tax loopholes to a contributor, all things Mr. Robinson would argue should get a Republican expelled from the House. But I guess that since Mr. Robinson is not supposed to be an impartial journalist, it doesn't matter what Mr. Robinson thinks.

Posted by: JamesSmith1 | August 5, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Wow Eugene - - you really hit a nerve on this one. It looks like every nut job on the planet is on this blog. How dare you defend a black man with the facts?

Posted by: Hawkestreet1 | August 5, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Eugene Robinson, you've got to be kidding. Charles Rangel has no business being in Congress.

Posted by: austinrl | August 5, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

The Black Man sticking up the The Black Man, while hating on The White Man.

Posted by: ravioliman6666 | August 5, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

This has to rank as the lamest defense of any scumbag since Kathleen Parker tried explain away Roman Polanski’s transgressions as a little lighthearted, 70’s-style merriment.

One wonders what evidence informs Robinson’s contention that Rangel is “mortified” or “embarrassed” by his actions.

On the contrary, everything about this great man and “one-time chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee” comes across as defiant and unapologetic. And with friends like Robinson it’s no wonder.

Why should the rest of us struggling to pay our taxes and keep a roof over our family’s head worry about such trivialities as tax fraud and housing fraud if the powerful people who write these laws don’t abide them? Where will we be as a nation if that becomes epidemic?

Everything thing the Democrat Party and their apologists in the media do nowadays seems purposefully designed to destroy what once was a pretty decent country, and was once a nation of laws.

Posted by: Bjartur | August 5, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

The other issues with Rangel, in addition to all of these issues, is that he had $500k appear out of nowhere that he hadn't declared on his taxes. How does an MOC making $160k per year (or less for the 40 years he's been in office) have that kind of savings? Add to that the CBC, of which he is a member, allowing corporate donors to sponsor its retreat (which I believe is where the unflattering pic of him laying by the pool occurred). I am a lifelong Dem, but there's just too many improprieties and appearances of impropriety. I am also annoyed that he didn't just take the censure and save the party having to defend this in the elections by choosing to have a trial. This is going to be playing out all fall...not good for the the party... and a selfish move by Rangel.

Posted by: Beantown317 | August 5, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Charles Rangel is no crook but he is a scumbag!!!

Posted by: ravioliman6666 | August 5, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

First, who knows what $82K bought in the Dominican Republic in 1987? Could well be a palace. I have no idea. I know this much: no one I know who bought property in 1987 is under water. Far from it.

Evidently Mr. Rangel took his taxes to Tim Geithner to have them prepared. Funny how this works. They cheat on their taxes until they get caught, then it was all just a big misunderstanding, an honest mistake, a Massachusetts boat in Rhode Island.

Further, even the Gambino crime family doesn't have as many rent-controlled apartments as Rangel. That he ran an office out of one is not a big concern to me. My concern is: how did he come by these apartments, and how can one man hold (I believe) four of them when they are so rare?

I'm not overly concerned with how he uses staff and stationery, but I can tell you this: in the PA state house, Bil DeWeese is up on charges for using staff for campaigning. I see little difference here.

I say all this from a perspective to the left of most. To the extent we suffer with this two-party illusion of representative democracy, we need the people we think of as the "good guys" to be squeaky clean. Period. Overly clean. Unquestionably clean. Not even a suspicion or a doubt. That needs to be the standard, because if it isn't, it's fodder for the subject-changing character assassins who themselves would make a lie detector explode but gain the upper hand with this low-hanging fruit.

Because of Rangel's obstinacy, look for his face on campaign commercials from Senate to dog catcher. Never mind that thsi inquiry is a positive indicator that the formerly feckless Ethics Committee has been revitalized under Pelosi's leadership. Never mind that Congressman Rangel is of course presumed innocent, and in fact is not accused of any crime.

We are under siege, and like it or not, we have to abandon our battlefield casualties if any of us are to survive.

The man is 80 years old. Those many who love him always will. Those who hate him and target him will likewise.

So let it rest -- time to retire -- for the good of the nation. In a very real sense, this could be Mr. Rangel's finest hour, should he act selflessly.

Posted by: trippin | August 5, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Robinson's defence of Rangel an effort to defend the indefencable. Eighty thousand US dollars would buy anyone a beachside villa in the D.R. in 1987. The dollar was much stronger, the D.R. much less developed and labour much cheaper then.

What about the misuse of Section 8 housing subsides? That is a fraud on the federal government and a federal crime. Eugene Robinson is either a racist defending a fraud committed by a crook or a political operative of the Democratic Party Machine.

I say present the case to a federal grand jury and if Rangel is indicted let a jury determine whether he is a crook that should spend some time in Club Fed at US taxpayer expense. That would be a very good use of federal tax dollars and possibly deter other crooks in Congress from defrauding the people of the United States

Posted by: gorasaab | August 5, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

obinson's defence of Rangel an effort to defend the indefencable. Eighty thousand US dollars would buy anyone a beachside villa in the D.R. in 1987. The dollar was much stronger, the D.R. much less developed and labour much cheaper then.

What about the misuse of Section 8 housing subsides? That is a fraud on the federal government and a federal crime. Eugene Robinson is either a racist defending a fraud committed by a crook or a political operative of the Democratic Party Machine.

I say present the case to a federal grand jury and if Rangel is indicted let a jury determine whether he is a crook that should spend some time in Club Fed at US taxpayer expense. That would be a very good use of federal tax dollars and possibly deter other crooks in Congress from defrauding the people of the United States.

Posted by: gorasaab | August 5, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

By Robinson's logic neither was Richard Nixon. We can always depend on Robinson to defend corrupt blacks, liberals, minorities and then turn around and feign absolute outrage at the least conservative misstep.

Posted by: georgiarat | August 5, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Wow, what a tinderbox this race issue is....is that the mark of a post-racial colorblind society? I think not....
The amount of rage and irrationality in these comments makes me anxious....I have to keep reminding myself that this is a democracy and we're all free to express ourselves. Eugene Robinson, included.
And that reminds me of a few other things about our democracy....

The standard of law is 'innocent until proven guilty' in this country - I'm sure this must be the case with ethics violations too. I think we ought to let the process unfold.

There is plenty of corruption to go around - on all sides - and the corrupt are well represented in positions of authority, and always have been in DC - and in business, and we Americans tolerate it, we revel in it, we love special treatment, something for nothing, gambling, lobbyists, junkets, golfing with the boss...these are all cousins to the behaviors that fuel petty corruption. It's the big corruption that we need to keep our eyes on, and the big corruption is usually so big we cant believe it, so they get away with it!
As far as corruption goes the problem is, mostly with, what is actually legal - hence Goldman dudes and others got a slap on the wrist and bonuses.
The main issue for most business people is how much corruption/theft your business can tolerate and what kind - i other words it's about proportion in these issues; the scale of wrongdoing. Other wise our white collar prisons would be overflowing.
So why dont we get up in arms about bigger issues? We do, when they arent on our side of the fence. The fact is that Republicans are way better at corruption - the big kind.
So the unspoken thing here is "jeez, even if Rangel is guilty, what he is accused of just isnt that bad comparatively speaking....for instance....
There have been no big convictions regarding the outrageous military contractor corruption in IRAQ - we're missing billions and they have recovered $70 million, a pittance, and who is up in arms over this? We didnt even care about an election being stolen until HBO made a film about it which got more attention than the actual events??? We are an ostrich-like people in the USA, we think racism is gone, this raft of comments would suggest this wound has not healed, and that Charles Rangel is emblematic of the worst of corruption!
HELLOO!!! Earth to Americans!!??!!

Posted by: integralperspectives | August 5, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Why is it Mr. Robinson, that I have the disturbing feeling that if Rangel were white, you would not be quite so forgiving? Everything with you is race and racism. Rangel is being challenged because he committed a crime - tax evasion. And it cannot be dismissed as a simple oversight - after all, Mr. Robinson, this is the man in charge of the Committee who writes our tax laws. I don't think that it's too much to ask that he be somewhat more attentive to his own tax situation. He's a nice guy, Mr. Robinson, but let's face it - he's a crook!! How about a little objectivity, Mr. Robinson? Ken Eliasberg

Posted by: kceliasberg | August 5, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but this is simply one black guy trying to save another black guy. Robinson would never, ever say this about any Republican and we all know this. I'm sick of how blacks can be openly racist and whites have to always shut up to avoid being called a racist.

Posted by: josephpturner | August 5, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Keep it up, Eugene!

You're a godsend to us regressives.

We LOVE you man.

Posted by: happyacres | August 5, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Hahahaha puhleeeease, $600,000 tax mistake is "trivial". I wonder how that would work if I had done that. To be on any committee the expectation would be for you to be "ethical". I think? Using his office, official time and official office supplies is trivial? No it is called a "conflict of interest".

Posted by: svengerald | August 5, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

...and maybe Robinson ought to ask himself how Rangel got his hands on $87,000 in the 80's to invest overseas on a Congressman's salary.

Posted by: josephpturner | August 5, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Robinson's Rulz:

1) Gene is always Politically Correct.

2) When Gene is wrong, refer to Skippy in Cambridge for airtight rationalization.

3) Obama is our first post-racial president.

4) A Beer Summit perpetuates the scam if the white guy surrenders the handcuffs.

Posted by: elgropo1 | August 5, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Hey Eugene, why don't YOU look into how Rangel and Waters became Multi-MILLIONAIRES while in office! wanna bet they BROKE the law and are CROOKS??

Posted by: morphy | August 5, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Quite simply, this article can be changed to: Eugene Robinson is no reporter, journalist, etc. Maybe increasing political hack may be the best moniker for him.

Posted by: 2010publius | August 5, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

He's innocent because he's black. I think WaPo needs to admit it has racism with in its ranks and do what ever takes to remove it. If it’s good enough for the tea party then it must be applied equally to all.....

Robinson you are a hack.....

Posted by: askgees | August 5, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Laws constrain freedom. It is a privelage, not a right, to have the authority to write laws and constrain others freedom.

When lawmakers are also law breakers, they cannot be allowed to serve. To allow it is to undermine the legitimacy of the law.

Congressfolk like Frank and Rangel have broken the law, plain and simple.

Hit the road, jacks.

Posted by: lowfinance | August 5, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

You gotta love the "apparently careless" guys who get to where they are by remembering faces, issues, what stop they are on the campaign trail, suddenly go "I don't righly know" when it comes to paying taxes or providing disclosure. Mr Robinson would be blistering in his scorn were, say, Reagan to holdhis had to his ear and say he didn't hear the question.

But this seems to be a filler column anyway with not much conviction behind it. Carry on.

Posted by: jhtlag1 | August 5, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Whether Mr. Rangel can be "technically" defined as a crook is open to debate, what is not open to debate is the utter worthlessness of this article. In addition to his "tax mistakes" which were either a deliberate attempt to avoid tax or a clear indication that he unfit to serve as a congressional representative, his egotistic solicitations for his center had such a taint of bad ethics that even AIG shied away from it. I think Mr. Robinson writes articles of this type not just out of blind loyalty the African American cause, but to solicit racist comments that he can than use to justify further articles and reporting along these lines.

Posted by: wolfnotsheep | August 5, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Rengel has 4 rent controlled apartments in Harlem. I think 3 of them have been conected to form one massive apartment. While the fourth one is located a few floors below and is used as a campaign office.

An office is not a residence. I'm rather certain that Rent Controlled apartments in NYC are to only be used as residencies not offices.

As to wheter or not he's guilty: has an "investigation" ever been brought against a member of congress proceeded this far a long; with 13 counts; and the Congresman has been found not guilty of any of the counts?

Chances are he's guilty.

None the less he should retire.

He's been in Congress for nearly 40 years. That's far too long; time for some young blood; time for a new generation to get their chance at governing.

Plus he's 80 years old. I say if you recieve Social Security, you've reached the age of retirment and should be forced out the door. If there's a minimum age to serve there sure aught to be a maximum age to serve. So let it be SENIOR CITIZENS NEED NOT APPLY.

Another reason to retire is to help his party.

can Rangel be re-elected to his Harlem district. Yes.

Do the charges against Rangel's help the rest of the Democrats in the up coming election? Of course not.

He's had a good run, but it must end at some point. He can still clear his name, but he can do it as an ordinary citizen.

He's too old.

"No body puts Baby [Russert] in a corner."

Posted by: mcgrupp10799 | August 5, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Rangel’s office made it all the way down to the “R’s” in the Liberal address book before they found someone willing to say something nice about an obvious scalawag.

Posted by: clandestinetomcat | August 5, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, as an African American who works with at-risk boys in the inner-city, your excuses for Mr. Rangel's behavior or the same I hear from elementary school boys. All of our boys (young and old) must be held accountable for their actions.

Posted by: BigMike2 | August 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

It's really sad when writers who are minorities feel the need to make excuses for people who are crooks based on nothing more than the color of their skin. If this were an elected official of any other ethnicity, especially if he or she happened to be conservative, I have no doubt this writer would be screaming for their heads. Instead the writer plays the apologist, sliding over the rent controlled apartments and possibly the slimy underside to this particularly distasteful iceberg of shame. Mr. Rangel is a savvy politician and he's been in office a very long time. In that time, he's become a millionaire, and in fact many of the long time residents of Congress have enriched themselves many times over. At some point the need to continue opulent lifestyles tends to lead to self-serving legislation. There's no question that has happened here. But this writer, like the voters who no doubt would reelect Rangel in a New York Minute, continue to perpetuate the attitude they claim to rail against. If there is a law, it must be applied to everyone REGARDLESS of color,not because of it. In playing the apologist, this writer betrays his own narrow bias. That's a shame.

Posted by: TruBluTopaz | August 5, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Black black black.
Black blackity black black.
Black black, blackity black.

Black black

Posted by: MrMeaner


Now that's funny I don't care who you are. Not to mention true!

Posted by: Ernest56 | August 5, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Gene
Your sure are color blind. When a man of color does something wrong you are blind to it. You really are a not so subtle racist.

Posted by: ObamaNot | August 5, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Gene
Your sure are color blind. When a man of color does something wrong you are blind to it. You really are a not so subtle racist.

Posted by: ObamaNot | August 5, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Gene
You sure are color blind. When a man of color does something wrong you are blind to it. You really are a not so subtle racist.

Posted by: ObamaNot | August 5, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Because he's dusky of hue? So every thing's copactic, says Robinson?

My, my. Hope the WaPo pays you a whole lot to write such crap, since it's bought your soul/your honor.

Aren't you the lucky one!

Posted by: mftill | August 5, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Gollee!!!
I wonder if Al Capone knew about this loop
hole and all the other people who have gone to jail for evading their could now get out.

Well my understanding it was only $75,000
he evaded or is that all the irs found?

Posted by: BPYLE47998 | August 5, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse


By David Weigel

"Being called a racist is the single most damaging charge for any American," said Niger Innis, the national spokesman for the Congress of Racial Equality, a major player in the civil rights struggle that since the late 1960s has been aligned with the right. "Because of this new phenomenon, the NAACP, in a betrayal of its own legacy, and in a betrayal of black Americans, has now adopted the tactic it was formed to fight in the first place—racial terror! The same racial terror that was employed by whites in hoods is now being employed by blacks and whites in suits! The terror is employed against Americans who want to exercise their First Amendment rights."

Posted by: corebanks1940 | August 5, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Robinson, this is the most idiotic, biased column you have written to date. You will defend and excuse anyone if they are liberal, but even more so if they are liberal AND black. What a hack!

Posted by: inmanorj | August 5, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Mr. Robinson was as quick to defend former Alaska Senator Ted Stevens, whose federal trial for failing to disclose all of his financial dealings was conveniently timed just before the 2008 elections.

If not, why not?

Mr. Stevens' conviction has since been overturned due to prosecutorial misconduct. Apparently the government knew their star witness was lying.

That doesn't really matter now, though. The point of the whole exercise seems to have been to help ensure Stevens' Democratic opponent would defeat him in the election.

He did. Barely.

Without the conviction? Not a chance.

The allegations against Mr. Rangel seem more numerous than those against Senator Stevens, but as sure as there is corruption in Washington, this will never see the inside of a criminal court.

Posted by: TheAnti-Emeril | August 5, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

re:
> I bet 82,000 back in 1987 would be
> pretty palatial for many spots in the
> Dominican Republic.

> Posted by: justmyvoice

Actually, the exchange rate between the peso and the dollar in 1982 was based on par value : one peso for one dollar.

That means that "pretty palatial" is a misleading comment.

Real estate in the D.R. was worth about the same as any piece of real estate in the US in 1982. There were real bargains because the international real estate market crashed in the early 1980s.

R.E. investors fled the US and bought international properties. The D.R. was no exception.

To imply that $82,000 would buy a "palatial" piece of property in the D.R. in 1982 is a false, quite misleading, statement.

Of course, that may have been the intent of the comment by "justmyvoice", who evidently speaks for one person : himself, without regard for economic facts.


Posted by: postinggoodsense | August 5, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

You may be right, Mr. Robinson.

For my part, I consider TV Evangelists charlatans, and include Politicians who act like them to be members of that Club!

Posted by: lufrank1 | August 5, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Ahh, the race baiting hack is back. He got 1 thing right: "we’re going to have to build more prisons." BTW CONgress is full of crooks.

Posted by: JohnLeeHooker1 | August 5, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised that Robinson has been so blinded by his affection for Rangel that he cannot see the moral dimension of his abuses. Rangel, a wealthy African-American, represents Harlem, the iconic African-American neighborhood with so much poverty and many poor and disadvantaged African-American residents. Rent control laws are intended to ensure that the poor and disadvantaged can afford housing. Yet in the midst of this poverty, the district's wealthy African-American congressman appropriated for his own personal use not one but four rent-controlled apartments, apartments that could have housed four needy families, while he could easily have afforded to buy space at market rates? That may or may not be criminal (I'm not familiar with the laws), but it is morally repugnant. It is evidence of character flaws so deep as to disqualify Rangel from holding high office and from representing the needs of his poor and disadvantaged constituents.

The fact that many others violate rent control laws is irrelevant. Not only do two wrongs not make a right, but those others have not been charged with representing the interests of those who need rent control in Congress. Charlie Rangel has obviously forgotten why he was sent to Washington. He should return to Harlem and spend some time visiting homeless shelters, looking into the faces of people who could be living in rent-controlled apartments but for his selfishness.

Posted by: jimcohen | August 5, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Of course, Rangel is above the law or indeed any sort of scrutiny or even criticism because he is plausibly black. Same thing applies to Obama, Holder and Eugene Robinson, a peculiarly nasty example of Affirmative Action raising a virtuless dolt above his capacities for the simple reason that his g-momma picked cotton. We tried equal rights. Darkies aren't having it. This is exactly and precisely what the old-line segregationists said would happen and it has happened. The so-called Civil Rights movement always was about nothing but making whitey pay for the crack, the malt liquor and the numberless baby-mommas. That is what it is about. That is what it always WAS about. That is what it will be about in perpetuity.

Posted by: megapotamus | August 5, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

What would be a "mortifying embarrassment" for Charley, or for top administration officials, would for me and the rest of us, be jail time. Why does he (and they) get a pass from Robinson? PostPartisan my @$$ !!

Posted by: SirWinstonChurchill | August 5, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is no crook. Former President Nixon said something similar. This is Your Life, or Charlie Rangel’s legacy of public office in the U.S. House of Representatives. Allegations of conduct unbecoming of revered Democrat politician:

a) Soliciting donations from people before his Ways and Means Committee to fund his special project i.e. your donations will render favorable considerations of your request to my Committee.

b) Evading tax payments to IRS, not paying taxes i.e. violations of tax laws and owed payment to IRS.

c) Establishing and running a Democrat campaign office for his re-elections located unlawfully in a building coded for residential housing.

d) Hiding $600,000 in income and assets that required public disclosure.

How long has Democrat Charlie Rangel gotten away with these corrupt activities while in public office of an elected Representative of the American people? This is a disgrace to U.S. Congress and the reason why American voters disapprove the performance of the House.

If the average U.S. citizen was convicted on any one of the charges, he or she would do jail time and have a felony conviction criminal record in U.S. court.

Posted by: klausdmk | August 5, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson, your excuses for Mr Rangel are weak. I am a Democrat and harbor no more dislike for him than anyone else caught abusing power. However it is more and more obvious why we continually get what we get in Congress. Our resolve to demand integrity and statesmanship is lost somewhere between being informed and voting. You say, "hey, its no big deal." Most of us say different. Still, things probably won't change. I fully expect to see Rangel wiggle off the hook. His bad? No, ours.

Posted by: stephenbach | August 5, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Rangel apparently was careless in filling out his required financial disclosure forms; he should have known better than to take that important exercise so lightly.
=======================================
IRS will probaly not tell me that I'm careless and took it lightly filling out my financial forms... if something was wrong.....you go on home now and forget we ever talked to you....sorry to have bothered you,,,,

Posted by: corebanks1940 | August 5, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, this article makes you look very foolish.

Charlie Rangle should be setting an example for all young people to emulate. Tax evasion, rent evasion, and arm-twising AIG for a bribe does not qualify.

Until Congress purges itself of people who engage in illegal behavior, their approval rating will continue to be in the tank.

November cannot come soon enough!

Posted by: djslaughter | August 5, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone really expect this partisan hack to do anything but cover for Rangel? And would any fool think that he would give the same break to anyone not a liberal Dem?

But I'm sure the typical WaPo lemming will eat this up.

Posted by: dftpub | August 5, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

…and you, Eugene, are no journalist…or is that JournoList?

Why do you still have a job?

Oh, I forgot…’cause you’re a Negro…

November can’t come soon enough!

Posted by: sosueme1 | August 5, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

If Charlie Rangel is a crook for all he is accused of then he has a lot of company in the House and Senate so we had better start lining them up one by one and getting a good look at just how many there are. Anyone wanna take bets on the count?

Posted by: rannrann | August 5, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Robinson: change the subject's name to George Bush or Sarah Palin and you'd be screaming for their necks.

Rangel thinks he's entitled to whatever he wants; and should be excused for whatever he's done. His errors were not administrative, they were clearly intentional and carried-out for years.

As to what he paid for the place, talk to Chris Dodd about real estate pricing... (Dodd too is a crook).

Posted by: fbanta | August 5, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Nero fiddle....Robinson wrote trash

Posted by: corebanks1940 | August 5, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Nero fiddled....Robinson wrote trash

Posted by: corebanks1940 | August 5, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

This is an Identity Politics column; Mr. Robinson has identified himself with those who feel Black politicians should be
held to a Lower Standard today because Uncle Tom was sold to Simon Legree in Kentucky when there were still only about 15 states. It would be such a tragedy if this racial scar ever healed. All the Race Hustlers and those who excuse their clumsy efforts to capitalize on the jealously preserved heritage would lose pulpits, podiums and Bylines.

Posted by: PhillupSpace1 | August 5, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

You, Mr. Robinson, are no judge of character

Posted by: ninatotenburg | August 5, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Not a crook, Gene? Huh, Nixon said the same thing. But then again, you'd likely defend him too if he had a 'D' behind his name.

Robinson is a hack, pure and simple.

Posted by: jjmilt | August 5, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

heres something that is worth reading

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- A British woman stripped down to her bikini and strutted defiantly through a swanky Dubai mall after an Emirati woman covered head-to-toe in black confronted her for wearing a low-cut shirt, police said Thursday.

Posted by: corebanks1940 | August 5, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

"...Did you post comments on WaPo message boards lambasting Vitter, Ensign, Delay..."
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Oh, I wasn't aware the Washington Post had a resident cracker@ss peckerwood writing witless excuses for whitey.

Get Bent!

Posted by: sosueme1 | August 5, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

heres something that is worth reading
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- A British woman stripped down to her bikini and strutted defiantly through a swanky Dubai mall
Posted by: corebanks1940
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Oh Yeah! Googled it but there ain't no tape! Damn!

Posted by: sosueme1 | August 5, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

The record is clear that plenty of white politicians - some more powerful than Charles Rangel- have also been reprimanded or even thrown out, with some doing hard time. Remember Jim Wright? Dan Rostenkowski? Newt Gingrich? Anyone who doesn't accept this is either lying to himself or hasn't bothered to learn the facts.
The most disappointing aspect of this is not that an elected representative cheated the system here and there to save few bucks or make a few bucks or buid his own monument. No breaking news there. But how does a once-respected national journalist so easily sink to the level of race apologist and enabler? One wonders what kind of poisonous and hateful atmosphere must exist at the Washington Post. What else could cause a well-educated, high-paid and high-profile employee like Eugene Robinson to climb aboard the race bandwagon along with all the bitter and bigoted idiots whose main purpose in life is to keep the misery of victimhood alive?
Yes, Charles Rangel served his country honorably and, like millions of others, he suffered for it. We respect that sacrifice career and we are grateful for it. Now we wish he'd reach deep inside to find that same honor again by taking whatever punishment his peers mete out and retiring quietly, with dignity.

Posted by: budholladay | August 5, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The record is clear that plenty of white politicians - some more powerful than Charles Rangel- have also been reprimanded or even thrown out, with some doing hard time. Remember Jim Wright? Dan Rostenkowski? Newt Gingrich? Anyone who doesn't accept this is either lying to himself or hasn't bothered to learn the facts.
The most disappointing aspect of this is not that an elected representative cheated the system here and there to save few bucks or make a few bucks or buid his own monument. No breaking news there. But how does a once-respected national journalist so easily sink to the level of race apologist and enabler? One wonders what kind of poisonous and hateful atmosphere must exist at the Washington Post. What else could cause a well-educated, high-paid and high-profile employee like Eugene Robinson to climb aboard the race bandwagon along with all the bitter and bigoted idiots whose main purpose in life is to keep the misery of victimhood alive?
Yes, Charles Rangel served his country honorably and, like millions of others, he suffered for it. We respect that sacrifice and we are grateful for it. Now we wish he'd reach deep inside to find that same honor again by taking whatever punishment his peers mete out and retiring quietly, with dignity.

Posted by: budholladay | August 5, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

>>>
Eeeuuuwwwgene Racecard.

PROPERTY VALUE:
A google search will show that the BEAUTIFUL 3 bedroom villa was listed at OVER $250k. Nice try. Dems like playing "class warfare" and it was necessary for Eeeeuuugene to downplay the value of the property even though NO ONE called it "palatial".

TAX FRAUD:
How could Rangel absent-mindedly forget to include the rental income when for many other years he listed it on his taxes? (And it was only after he was caught, that he corrected his taxes.)

LASTLY:
Dan Rostenkowski of Illinois was prosecuted for a lot less!

<<<


PS. Does A-N-Y-O-N-E have any respect for Eeeeeuuuuwwwgene as a writer?!?!

Posted by: CyKick | August 5, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Rangel is no more a crook than Mark Foley was. The Dems demanded his resignation. Youre a hypocrite Mr. Robinson

Posted by: Historyshowus | August 5, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

The comments calling Mr. Robinson a racist seem completely ridiculous. Given Mr. Robinson's work, it is much more likely that he is defending the criminal Rangel because Rangel is a liberal, not because Rangel is black. Let us please not useless bandy about the race card.

Mr. Robinson: If I am not mistaken, Rangel did not pay up until the error was made public. If only the IRS would cut the rest of us so much slack.

Rangel has committed criminal behavior, thereby making himself a criminal. Mr. Robinson, you may disagree about the seriousness of the charges, but Rangel is quite guilty. For shame that you would defend a dishonest man taking advantage of his political position. Mr. Robinson, you, sir, lack any intellectual or moral honesty in your columns.

Posted by: CitizenQ | August 5, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, you have lost your mind. this man has broken laws and you still defend him. Whether he is black or white, it shouldn't matter, he is a criminal and a misguided liberal. I understand he served in the armed forces, but that should not matter. He has been living off the fat of the land too long and not honestly.

Posted by: badguv1 | August 5, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Gene,

You are the most recist person on this earth/universe. I have always seen you supporting african american and always said against anybody say otherwisw. In our world if you do the crime you do the time. And Charlie Rangle should face up to that. Why should we treat him differnt than anybody else. Do you want us to believe that he did it by ignorence and in good faith he did not know the law. I don't understand how can you say that he should be forgivenn. Like I said if you do the crime you do the time. And he should be executed to show the people that no body is above the law and he should be in JAIL.

Posted by: patukanani2001 | August 5, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson:

Everything he did was for his own gain, either financial or to buff up his "legacy". One real transgression, but not so bad, since the villa/shack was only worth $83K? What do you think it is worth today? Hubris, everybody does it, those rent control laws are so Byzantine---blah, blah, blah! And, just in case you haven't been out among the regular people, most of us are about to evict, this coming November, many old fossils who should have retired decades ago from Congress. If his constituents have any integrity of thought they should send Mr. Rangel packing as well. I do find your columns useful as they help me define the left-wing-nut boundary of spin. And as other posters have noted, how would you be spinning this if Charlie was a fat cat 80 year old Republican from Alabama?

Have you ever thought about just writing the truth and letting lesser writers (and you are a terrific writer) carry the spin bucket?

Posted by: Ja_Mais | August 5, 2010 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Mr Robinson:

Everything he did was for his own gain, either financial or to buff up his "legacy". One real transgression, but not so bad, since the villa/shack was only worth $83K? What do you think it is worth today? Hubris, everybody does it, those rent control laws are so Byzantine---blah, blah, blah! And, just in case you haven't been out among the regular people, most of us are about to evict, this coming November, many old fossils who should have retired decades ago from Congress. If his constituents have any integrity of thought they should send Mr. Rangel packing as well. I do find your columns useful as they help me define the left-wing-nut boundary of spin. And as other posters have noted, how would you be spinning this if Charlie was a fat cat 80 year old Republican from Alabama?

Have you ever thought about just writing the truth and letting lesser writers (and you are a terrific writer) carry the spin bucket?

Posted by: Ja_Mais | August 5, 2010 7:10 PM | Report abuse

All you need do to receive an apologia or a congratulations from Mr.Robinson is be black! He is a racist and a Obamatron of the first order. What's next a defense of Ms. Waters' banking associations? You bet ya!

Posted by: Madrid1000 | August 5, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Rangle, Waters and the other swamp dwellers who haven't been caught yet are the best argument for term limits I have heard. Maybe allow 2 terms. It takes them that long to learn how to steal and then they are out.

Posted by: bob70 | August 5, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Rangel, waters and the rest of the swamp dwellers in congress are he best argument yet for term limits. Try 2 terms - it will take most of them that long to learn how to steal

Posted by: bob70 | August 5, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is a serial abuser of the public trust. By defending his actions you reveal yorself as just another partisan hack.

Posted by: smcoop | August 5, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Rangel is a serial abuser of the public trust. By defending his actions, Mr. Robinson, you reveal yourself as a partisan hack. Enjoy the election returns in November. I know I will.

Posted by: smcoop | August 5, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil! Think what Mr. Robinson would be saying if this were a Republican with just 1/10th of the charges filed against him that have been filed against Charlie Rangel? However, except that he's willing to just sweep Rep Rangel's corruption under the floor I tend to agree with him to some extent. Corruption is Mother's Milk to Democrats, and Charlie hasn't taken any more Mother's Milk than most other Democrats in the House and Senate. So why should be be singled out. Same for Maxine Waters. Nancy Pelosi's stinking swamp is safe from being drained while she's in charge. As for Charlie Rangel? He's a likeable guy and he's 80. Just let him keep swimming along in Pelosi's swamp!!!

Posted by: valwayne | August 5, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil! Think what Mr. Robinson would be saying if this were a Republican with just 1/10th of the charges filed against him that have been filed against Charlie Rangel? However, except that he's willing to just sweep Rep Rangel's corruption under the floor I tend to agree with him to some extent. Corruption is Mother's Milk to Democrats, and Charlie hasn't taken any more Mother's Milk than most other Democrats in the House and Senate. So why should be be singled out. Same for Maxine Waters. Nancy Pelosi's stinking swamp is safe from being drained while she's in charge. As for Charlie Rangel? He's a likeable guy and he's 80. Just let him keep swimming along in Pelosi's swamp!!!

Posted by: valwayne | August 5, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil! Think what Mr. Robinson would be saying if this were a Republican with just 1/10th of the charges filed against him that have been filed against Charlie Rangel? However, except that he's willing to just sweep Rep Rangel's corruption under the floor I tend to agree with him to some extent. Corruption is Mother's Milk to Democrats, and Charlie hasn't taken any more Mother's Milk than most other Democrats in the House and Senate. So why should be be singled out. Same for Maxine Waters. Nancy Pelosi's stinking swamp is safe from being drained while she's in charge. As for Charlie Rangel? He's a likeable guy and he's 80. Just let him keep swimming along in Pelosi's swamp!!!

Posted by: valwayne | August 5, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Robinson, you have got to be kidding or must thik we are all fools. He has four rent stabilized apartments. If he wasn't trying to enrich himself why didn't he go out and rent apartments at full value. What did he do with the money he saved on the rentals, did he donate it to charity? Don't give me the crap about how much his rental properties were worth whe he purchased them. What are they worth now? Why did he not declare the rent he made on the property/ Did he also donate that money to charity, or did it go into his pocket. Give me a break!! The man is not only a crook, he is a big crook!!!

Posted by: trff2 | August 5, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

So, what should be the purchase price of a piece of rental property before taxes are collected on the rental income? Your first paragraph infer, since the property cost only $82K that Mr Ranglel is an average joe just trying to get by. But as everyone knows he is a millionaire and aren't we trying collect more taxes from them. And by him being a millionaire isn't he evil.

Mr Robinson are you saying that if you bought a house for $82K and rented it that you wouldn't pay taxes on the profit?

Or is this exemption just for the ruling class?

Posted by: theproudeagle | August 5, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

So, what should be the purchase price of a piece of rental property before taxes are collected on the rental income? Your first paragraph infer, since the property cost only $82K that Mr Ranglel is an average joe just trying to get by. But as everyone knows he is a millionaire and aren't we trying collect more taxes from them. And by him being a millionaire isn't he evil.

Mr Robinson are you saying that if you bought a house for $82K and rented it that you wouldn't pay taxes on the profit?

Or is this exemption just for the ruling class?

Posted by: theproudeagle | August 5, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

So, what should be the purchase price of a piece of rental property before taxes are collected on the rental income? Your first paragraph infer, since the property cost only $82K that Mr Ranglel is an average joe just trying to get by. But as everyone knows he is a millionaire and aren't we trying collect more taxes from them. And by him being a millionaire isn't he evil.

Mr Robinson are you saying that if you bought a house for $82K and rented it that you wouldn't pay taxes on the profit?

Or is this exemption just for the ruling class?

Posted by: theproudeagle | August 5, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

So, what should be the purchase price of a piece of rental property before taxes are collected on the rental income? Your first paragraph infer, since the property cost only $82K that Mr Ranglel is an average joe just trying to get by. But as everyone knows he is a millionaire and aren't we trying collect more taxes from them. And by him being a millionaire isn't he evil.

Mr Robinson are you saying that if you bought a house for $82K and rented it that you wouldn't pay taxes on the profit?

eagle out

Or is this exemption just for the ruling class?

Posted by: theproudeagle | August 5, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

So, what should be the purchase price of a piece of rental property before taxes are collected on the rental income? Your first paragraph infer, since the property cost only $82K that Mr Ranglel is an average joe just trying to get by. But as everyone knows he is a millionaire and aren't we trying collect morel taxes from them. And by him being a millionaire isn't he evil.

Mr Robinson are you saying that if you bought a house for $82K and rented it that you wouldn't pay taxes on the profit?

eagle out

Or is this exemption just for the ruling class?

Posted by: theproudeagle | August 5, 2010 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Did I miss Eugenie's column defending OJ?

Posted by: Jarbo1 | August 5, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

Judging, or should I say pre-judging people based on the color of their skin. Isn't that the definition of racist Mr. Robinson?? If this was, let's say Newt Gingrich that we were discussing, I wonder if you'd think this was "technical all the way to trivial"

I didn't think so

Posted by: bobmcd | August 5, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Mr. Robinson's well-reasoned argument that Charlie Rangel is no crook and did nothing seriously wrong. I also want to be the first to agree--in advance--with his upcoming article explaining that Maxine Waters is no crook and did nothing seriously wrong. In fact, I want to register my agreement with his next half-dozen similar well-reasoned articles about other members of the Black Congressional Caucus and other black politicians.

Posted by: Ninatony | August 6, 2010 1:09 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, if Rangel was white or had an "R" after his name, you would have spent column after column excoriating him, and you know it. You're a racist hypocrite.

Posted by: anna_78750 | August 6, 2010 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Is this guy Robinson Charlie Rangel's mother. The one who says after her son is convicted, that her son is an "Honor Student"

Posted by: trff2 | August 6, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

NewsBusters| Our Rangel Game: Which Eugene Robinson Is It?
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tim-graham/2010/08/06/our-rangel-game-which-eugene-robinson-it

Posted by: StewartIII | August 6, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

This may be the first time I have ever disagreed with Eugene Robinson. First, it is a disingenuous rhetorical trick to focus on the improper filing of forms. I am sure Rangel will do the same. No on thinks the forms are the big issue.

For folks who do not live in NYC, the 4 rent controlled apartments may seem like an obscure issue involving technicalities. No such thing. It is an out-and-out bribe. It is a shame Robinson doesn't admit it. He loses a lot of respect in my eyes for pretending it is anything else. If Robinson knows of any other NYC politician or anyone else at all who has more than on rent controlled apartment, he should out the person. That person is STEALING a benefit from someone else who cannot afford his or her housing. Robinson knows this. If the landlord is cooperating, then it is a bribe or, in the totally private sector, it is a kickback. There is no technicality about it.

As to the tax fraud, subsequently paying the taxes does not cure the felony. The IRS may choose not to prosecute, I don't know why, but the felony is still there. Almost everyone is in agreement that the most informed person in the United States committed tax fraud. There is no such thing as triviality in this case. And it is a felony.

Posted by: Merican | August 7, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson, so glad that there is a reasoned voice out there ... a welcomed respite from the addle-brained, knee-jerk imbeciles (many of whom are unwittingly steered by Faux News)out there who are chomping at the bit to pounce on any African-American politician or so-called liberal. Your argument is well-reasoned and ample proof that there are two sides to every story. Please continue to dispel the myths. You are indeed significant!

Posted by: EdWiley | August 8, 2010 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Hey Eugene, does someone need to copy & paste your cheering when Tom Delay got caught doing the same thing your Charlie Rangel did? I'd be happy to do it.

Rangel is a crook, he did violate NY laws, he violated federal laws as well, and there's definitely questions about where some of his assets have come from.

Rangel rewrote tax law to benefit a company that donated money to his namesake center. Rangel used four rent-controlled apartments (violating NYC's rent-control laws) including using one as an office, not a residence (also violating NYC's laws), which also raises the question of an improper in-kind campaign contribution
Rangel improperly reported his ownership interest in a Dominican Republic condominium and failed to pay income taxes on $75,000 in rental income. Rangel intentionally failed to report millions of dollars in mysteriously acquired assets including an IRA, mutual fund accounts and equities.

Any one of us would be serving long term jail sentences had we committed even half of what Rangel has, let alone have such crimes ignored for years by his cronies in the house. Rangel has no entitlement to get a pass, nor can he hide behind "service", millions of US citizens have served in the military, during war, and they haven't been given a commit any bunch of crimes you want free card. He not only deserves to be kicked out of congress, had his pension and any other benefits taken away, but sentenced to some serious jail time, and Eugene, you deserve to be sentenced right along with him for your being such a hypocrite and a fraud.

Posted by: jenn3 | August 8, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

It sounds like you are saying we should bend the rules and look the other way for this long serving member. I say we make an example of him. The American public is sick and tired of the hypocrisy in Washington...on both sides!!! The idea that he should be able to do what he wants to fulfill his ego is ludicrous. Should normal citizens be able to bend rules and break laws to fulfill their own ego? Most politicians already line their pockets with special interest money all at the taxpayers expense. Most Washington so-called politicians are a joke, in it for their own self-interest and screw over the American taxpayer--and Rangel epitomizes this.

Posted by: maverickguy | August 8, 2010 10:43 PM | Report abuse

I see a lot of people here stating that Charlie Rangel has committed crimes. But he's had no trial, or even a hearing. Since when are our citizens guilty before proven innocent? I thought we had due process, even for Congressmen. Give him his hearing so he can defend himself against the charges, then let the chips fall where they may. Two years is long enough to wait.

Posted by: elektra5 | August 12, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

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