Letter calling for an investigation of Rep. Charles Rangel

September 19, 2008



Letter calling for an investigation of Rep. Charles Rangel

Gene Green

Acting Chairman

Committee on Standards of Official Conduct

HT-2, The Capitol

Washington, DC 20515

Dear Congressman Green:

The Ethics Committee is reportedly considering an investigation into the personal finances of Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY). We write to urge you to quickly act on and resolve the ethics investigation into the actions of Rep. Rangel.

As part of your responsibility to monitor, investigate, and, when warranted, mete out punishment for ethics infractions by House members, it is imperative that you act quickly and fairly in such matters. In this case, Rep. Rangel has filed with the Ethics Committee three requests for investigations into his own activity in the past three months. We are assuming those filings have triggered an ethics investigation into Rep. Rangel's actions in the following areas:

1. use of a rent-subsidized apartment in Harlem that he has used as a campaign office, which may violate state and city rules that rent-regulated apartments may only be used as primary residences;

2. failure to report approximately $75,000 in income from vacation property in the Dominican Republic that he has owned since 1988, which may violate Congressional disclosure rules;

3. use of congressional stationery in seeking support for a Public Service in the CUNY system that would bear his name, which may violate House rule 23 on the Unauthorized Use of Letterhead.

All three of these actions raise legitimate ethical questions. Rep. Rangel has taken the useful step of officially submitting the requests for investigations into all three arrangements. If the Ethics Committee is not currently investigating these actions, we call upon the committee to start the process immediately and thoroughly investigate as quickly as possible.

Sincerely,

Bob Edgar

President, Common Cause


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