Charlie Rangel has decided to change his tactics. Usually he finds a way to steal tax payer money, like giving earmarks to a school named in his honor, or neglecting to pay his taxes, or live in four rent-controlled apartments even though based on his income he probably doesn’t even warrant one.
Today different, today Charlie Rangel decided to waste our money. Six months ago Rangel could have admitted his wrong-doing, get a minor slap on the wrist and gone his merry way into the 112th congress, but Charlie refused to admit any guilt.
So Charlie’s ethics trial began today, just as it was supposed to….but Charlie must have forgotten. He showed up without a lawyer, asked for a delay giving an excuse so lame that “my dog ate my homework” would have worked much better.
Rangel wanted a delay because he didn’t have a lawyer and couldn’t afford one. I guess he feels that six months was not long enough to prepare for a trial.
After his request for a delay was denied Charlie walked out. The Congressman feels that he has been denied council, but in actuality he is doing to America what the TSA folks do if you don’t want to use the full body scanners, he is fondling our private parts.
One of the reasons Rangel may not have the cash for an attorney is that according to the NY Post, he was paying his legal team via another violation of ethics rules.
Congressman Charles Rangel, whose ethics trial starts tomorrow, appears to have improperly used political-action committee money to pay for his defense.
Rangel tapped his National Leadership PAC for $293,000 to pay his main legal-defense team this year. He took another $100,000 from the PAC in 2009 to pay lawyer Lanny Davis.
Two legal experts told The Post such spending is against House rules.
“It’s a breach of congressional ethics,” one campaign-finance lawyer said.
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), who is overseeing the trial, noted that Rangel “asked for formal advice from the committee [on paying for his attorneys] in Sept. 2008, in March of 2009, in October of 2010 and again in November of 2010, and received informal advice on that in August.Each time, the committee responded and provided Mr. Rangel with formal guidance on how he could pay his legal fees in this matter.”
So the ethics trial that didn’t have to happen is going on without the defendant a great use of our tax dollars.