U.S. House Speaker John Boehner disappointingly participated in a ceremony unveiling a permanent portrait of New York Rep. Charlie Rangel in the Longworth House Office Building yesterday. This honor comes less than a year after the House Ethics Committee found Rangel guilty of 11 counts of ethical violations. He was censured by a 9 – 1 vote for improperly soliciting money from corporate officials and lobbyists for a building at City College of New York bearing his name, failing to disclose hundreds of thousands of dollars of income, maintaining a rent controlled apartment in New York as a campaign office and not paying income taxes on a lavish villa in the Dominican Republic.
The recommendation of censure is the most serious punishment the House can administer — short of expulsion. The full House voted to censure him by a vote of 333-79.
But yesterday the House Ways and Means Committee, which the crooked Rangel chaired until he lost his gavel following censure for the numerous ethics violations, hosted a ceremony and reception to unveil Rangel’s official portrait.
Worse yet, Republican Speaker Boehner joined liberal Democrats — Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, along with New York Democrat Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer to speak at the ceremony honoring tax cheat Rangel.
Aides to Rangel refused to confirm how much the portrait cost or who was paying the tab. This 2007 Washington Post article contained an estimated cost of the artwork as $64,500.
Watch this vote for censure that took place December 2, 2010. Rangel, who cannot bring himself to take responsibility for his actions, defiantly blames the censure for his own criminality on “politics.”
The American people, fed up with the status quo, voted last November to replace Democrat members of Congress with Republicans, gaining 63 seats in the most sweeping House cleaning in decades. Speaker Boehner needs a memory refresher. We voted for ethical representation, not this ‘going along to get along’ shameful behavior.