Pelosi Lets Rangel Slide...for Now

Nancy Pelosi is better off doing nothing than punishing Charlie Rangel, aides say
By Mat Probasco,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 6, 2009 9:28 AM CDT
Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks at a news conference after a roundtable discussion on health care issues with religious leaders at St. James Episcopal Church in San Francisco.    (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
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(Newser) – Stripping ethics-challenged Charlie Rangel of his Ways and Means Committee chairmanship would create more problems for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi than it would solve, reports Politico, citing current and former House aides. Punishing Rangel would mean having to fill his seat—with one of several less-than-stellar replacements—and infuriating the Congressional Black Caucus.

Calls for Rangel's ouster are growing in the House as the Harlem rep faces ethics inquiries into his use of congressional letterhead in fundraising letters for a school bearing his name, failure to pay taxes on property in the Dominican Republic, failure to report assets, and use of several rent-controlled luxury apartments. Nonetheless, Pelosi is willing to wait for the ethics probe results, “Unless they find $90,000 in his freezer, like they did with Jefferson," an aide says.
(Read more Charles Rangel stories.)