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It’s called “censure,” which is the second-toughest punishment the House can hand down to one of its own. The only thing tougher is tossing the bum out on his ass.
Which is what the House should have done with Rangel. Instead of standing him in the well of the House and mouthing some meaningless words, the “good and honorable” gentlemen and women should have lowered the boom — throwing Rangel into the street and recommended the U.S. Department of Justice take his life apart so he can spend the rest of his miserable existence behind bars.
But this is Washington where the powerful take care of its own and the pathetic handling of Rangel’s many crimes was a crime in itself.
Rangel ignored the law. He evaded taxes. He lied to investigators and on his official ethics forms. He padded his pockets at taxpayer expense. He lived large at taxpayer expense. And then he laughed at those who called him on his excesses.
When the censure came, Charles Rangel showed no remorse. He stood before the press afterward and made no apologies, exhibited no contrition and gave not one single indication that he had learned a damn thing from his indiscretions. He made it clear that he accepted no judgment by his peers, saying his actions would be judged down the road by others.
Rangel’s continued defiance stands as a disgusting symbol of the failure of Congress. If this group of misfits cannot adequate deal with the wrong doing of one of its own, how in the hell can we expect it to run a country?
Charles Rangel should have been town into the streets of New York to be publicly stoned by the constituents he failed to serve. Then every member of Congress who stood by for years and let this criminal get by with his many crimes be led from the Capitol in shackles and returned home to face the anger and wrath of of those they failed to serve.
Then all should be locked in stocks on public squares to rot for the rest of their miserable lives.