The House is scheduled to vote today on a resolution to remove corruptocrat Charlie Rangel from his Ways and Means chairmanship.
Make sure your congressional reps are on board. Capitol switchboard: 202-224-3121.
Carter Joins New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Buffalo News, Minneapolis Star-Tribune in Calling for Chairman to Step Down
(WASHINGTON, DC) – House Members Wednesday will have to cast a recorded vote on whether it is acceptable for Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) to evade federal taxes for over a decade, and yet pay none of the penalties and interest charges that the IRS piles on the average American taxpayer for far less serious offenses.
House Republican Conference Secretary John Carter (R-TX) this morning is introducing a Privileged Resolution calling for Rangel to be removed as Chairman of the committee that oversees the IRS and the federal tax code, until the 16-month investigation of multiple tax, federal disclosure, and ethics violation charges against Chairman Rangel has been concluded.
Rangel in August made new confessions of failure to report nearly a million dollars in assets on federal disclosure forms. Since the Ethics Committee investigation of Rangel began in July 2008, it had already been expanded twice before the latest revelations.
“We cannot tolerate a double standard in this country, one for the common man and another for the rich and powerful,” says Carter, a former state judge for over 20 years. “To allow Mr. Rangel to continue to serve as Chairman of the very committee with IRS oversight, without paying a nickel in penalties, and with no end in sight to his ethics investigation, sends a clear message to the American public that this government refuses to abide by the same laws they impose on the working people of this country. With this vote, those people can see exactly where their representative stands on the issue of equality under the law.”
Carter has also challenged and criticized the even more serious tax violations of U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. Geithner failed to pay federal withholding taxes over multiple tax years on earnings from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), yet when discovered by IRS audit, paid no penalties.
“When the boss of the IRS, and the Chairman of the House Committee that controls the IRS, fail to pay their taxes and walk off without penalty, we have made a mockery of our tax system and the rule of law itself,” says Carter. “Either this House repairs this damage, or the American people will have to replace this House. The only other option is to change the law so that every American taxpayer is afforded the same leniency as Secretary Geithner and Chairman Rangel.”
Carter challenged all House Members to read the resolution carefully, examine the seriousness of the admissions and charges, and judge whether they in good conscience could vote against the measure and explain their support of a double standard to constituents with tax problems.
Here’s the full text of the Resolution:
Raising a question of the privileges of the House.
WHEREAS, the gentleman from New York, Charles B. Rangel, the fourth most senior Member of the House of Representatives, serves as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, a position of considerable power and influence within the House of Representatives; and,
WHEREAS, clause one of Rule XXXIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives provides, “A Member, Delegate, Resident Commission, officer, or employee of the House shall conduct himself at all times in a manner that shall reflect creditably on the House;
WHEREAS, The New York Times reported on September 5, 2008, that, “Representative Charles B. Rangel has earned more than $75,000 in rental income from a villa he has owned in the Dominican Republic since 1988, but never reported it on his federal or state tax returns, according to a lawyer for the congressman and documents from the resort.”; and,
WHEREAS, in an article in the September 5, 2008 edition of The New York Times, his attorney confirmed that Representative Rangel’s annual congressional Financial Disclosure statements failed to disclose the rental income from his resort villa; and,
WHEREAS, The New York Times reported on September 6, 2008 that, “Representative Charles B. Rangel paid no interest for more than a decade on a mortgage extended to him to buy a villa at a beachfront resort in the Dominican Republic, according to Mr. Rangel’s lawyer and records from the resort. The loan, which was extended to Mr. Rangel in 1988, was originally to be paid back over seven years at a rate of 10.5 percent. But within two years, interest on the loan was waived for Mr. Rangel.”; and,
WHEREAS, clause 5(a)(2)(A) of House Rule 25 defines a gift as, “…a gratuity, favor, discount, entertainment, hospitality, loan, forbearance, or other item having monetary value” and prohibits the acceptance of such gifts except in limited circumstances; and,
WHEREAS, Representative Rangel’s acceptance of thousands of dollars in interest forgiveness is a violation of the House gift ban; and,
WHEREAS, Representative Rangel’s failure to disclose the aforementioned gifts and income on his Personal Financial Disclosure Statements violates House rules and federal law; and,
WHEREAS, Representative Rangel’s failure to report the aforementioned gifts and income on federal, state and local tax returns is a violation of the tax laws of those jurisdictions; and,
WHEREAS, the Committee on Ways and Means, which Representative Rangel chairs, has jurisdiction over the United States Tax Code; and,
WHEREAS, the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct first announced on July 31, 2008 that it was reviewing allegations of misconduct by Representative Rangel; and,
WHEREAS, the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct announced on September 24, 2008 that it had established an investigative subcommittee in the matter of Representative Rangel; and,
WHEREAS, The New York Times reported on November 24, 2008 that, “Congressional records and interviews show that Mr. Rangel was instrumental in preserving a lucrative tax loophole that benefited [Nabors Industries] an oil drilling company last year, while at the same time its chief executive was pledging $1 million to the Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service at C.C.N.Y.”; and,
WHEREAS, the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct announced on December 9, 2008 that it had expanded the jurisdiction of the aforementioned investigative subcommittee to examine the allegations related to Representative Rangel’s involvement with Nabors Industries; and,
WHEREAS, Roll Call newspaper reported on September 15, 2008 that, “The inconsistent reports are among myriad errors, discrepancies and unexplained entries on Rangel’s personal disclosure forms over the past eight years that make it almost impossible to get a clear picture of the Ways and Means chairman’s financial dealings.”; and,
WHEREAS, Roll Call newspaper reported on September 16, 2008 that, “Rangel said he would hire a ‘forensic accountant’ to review all of this disclosure forms going back 20 years, and to provide a report to the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, which Rangel said will then make public.”; and,
WHEREAS, nearly five months after Representative Rangel pledged to provide a public forensic accounting of his tax and federal financial disclosure records, he has failed to do so; and,
WHEREAS, an editorial in The New York Times on September 15, 2008 stated, “Mounting embarrassment for taxpayers and Congress makes it imperative that Representative Charles Rangel step aside as chairman of the Ways and Means Committee while his ethical problems are investigated.”; and,
WHEREAS, on May 24, 2006, then Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi cited “high ethical standards” in a letter to Representative William Jefferson asking that he resign his seat on the Committee on Ways and Means in light of ongoing investigations into alleged financial impropriety by Representative Jefferson,
WHEREAS, by the conduct giving rise to this resolution, Representative Charles B. Rangel has dishonored himself and brought discredit to the House; and,
Therefore, be it RESOLVED,
upon adoption of this resolution and pending completion of the investigation into his affairs by the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, Representative Rangel is hereby removed as chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means.
Favorite flashback: Tax cheat Rangel caught on tape: “Why don’t you mind your goddamned business?”
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