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Nation: Rangel Sets Up Fund to Help DCCC Favorites

House Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) has set up a joint fundraising entity with 10 highly touted Democrats who are challenging Republican House incumbents or are running for open seats.

Rangel plans to use the proceeds from his annual birthday fundraiser at New York’s swank Tavern on the Green restaurant to benefit the new campaign committee, the Rangel Victory Fund. The fundraiser is scheduled for Aug. 6 — a full two months after his 78th birthday — with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), New York Gov. David Paterson (D) and Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean as the featured guests.

Rangel, who already has raised about $900,000 for the DCCC this cycle and $2.5 million for various Democratic candidates and committees, will share the money raised at the fundraiser with Ohio state Sen. John Boccieri, who is running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Ralph Regula (R); Illinois state Sen. Debbie Halvorson, who is running for the seat of retiring Rep. Jerry Weller (R); Iraq War veteran Ashwin Madia, who is running in the open-seat race to replace Rep. Jim Ramstad (R-Minn.); former Ways and Means aide Dan Maffei, who is running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Jim Walsh (R-N.Y.); retired Navy commander Eric Massa, who is in a rematch with Rep. Randy Kuhl (R-N.Y.); New York City Councilmember Michael McMahon, who is running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Vito Fossella (R); businessman Walt Minnick, who is challenging Rep. Bill Sali (R-Idaho); Iraq War veteran Jon Powers, one of the Democrats running for the seat being vacated by Rep. Tom Reynolds (R-N.Y.); business consultant Dan Seals, who is in a rematch with Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), and New Jersey Assemblywoman Linda Stender, who is running in the open seat race to replace Rep. Mike Ferguson (R).

DCCC Chairman Chris Van Hollen (Md.) called Rangel “a tremendous asset to the DCCC’s efforts to strengthen and grow our majority.”

“Chairman Rangel is a mentor and friend to so many Democratic candidates for Congress nationwide, helping them to effectively cross the finish line and join our Democratic Caucus,” Van Hollen said.

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