As if the Democratic Party did not have enough problems facing them in the midterm elections in November, two senior African American lawmakers in the House of Representatives have managed to make themselves the center of corruption probes that are leading to ethics investigations!
Congressman Charlie Rangel of New York, the former Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, is facing 13 ethics violations in a public trial which seems daunting to overcome! Having been in the House for nearly 40 years, Rangel seems obviously to have misused his office and to have a level of cockiness and arrogance which does not do his cause any favor!
Congresswoman Maxine Waters of California also faces ethics charges, and is the senior African American woman in the House, with nearly 20 years in the chamber. She is facing charges of helping her husband financially with a bank tied to him. She is well known for her often outrageous statements and actions, including wanting earmarks named after her!
The problem with both Rangel and Waters is that they both display arrogance, cockiness, and extreme egotism, but if one dares to state that publicly, they often are called racists!
That cannot be allowed to be reasons for them to avoid paying the price for their corruption, which seems quite clear! The Democrats in the House need to do what is proper, which is to back away from both members on the basis that they are hurting the party’s interests and do not deserve united support just because of their race!
If the Democrats refuse to hold Rangel and Waters responsible simply to avoid the charge of racism, then the party will suffer dearly in November!
What is needed is to make clear that the party will not accept corruption in any member, whether African American, Hispanic, Asian, or Caucasian! The principles of decency, ethics, and honesty are essential to keep public support and deal with the many issues that face this nation!
The fact is that all those under any stage of ethics violations, a total of eight now, are African American House Democrats! Does that make it a racist act, or just the reality that apparently SOME members of the House who happen to be black take liberties with their positions of power?
To promote the idea that race is the key factor is not a service to the House of Representatives, and in the case of Rangel and Waters, instead of fighting the charges in a divisive way, they should both “cut deals” or face a vote based on their behavior, not their race!