Democrats Back Rangel

Posted September 16, 2008 at 4:14pm

House Democratic leaders rallied behind Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday, saying he should keep his post amid a House ethics probe into his personal finances.

“I see no reason why Mr. Rangel should step down,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told reporters.

“Mr. Rangel has called for the ethics committee to look into his disclosures, etc., and … I have supported his call for the ethics committee to look into that.”

Asked if she has privately asked Rangel to step down, the Speaker replied, “No.”

Similarly, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said Rangel should remain chairman for the time being and is “doing what a Member should do” by waiting on the ethics committee to review his situation.

“My expectation and my request of the committee would be that they do so and they do so now,” Hoyer said. “The fact of the matter is we have a process.”