Yesterday, there was a candidates forum for the 30th District Congressional seat, which is now held by embattled Rep. Charles Rangel. Even though his rivals discussed his "years and years of corruption" and "The corruption that Congressman Rangel is a part of is being in Congress for 40 years," the NY Times reports that the crowd was pro-Rangel, booing and jeering his challengers. And Rangel took President Obama to task for suggesting he should retire and "end his career with dignity." The 80-year-old said, "Frankly, he has not been around long enough to determine what my dignity is. For the next two years, I will be more likely to protect his dignity."
Rangel faces over a dozen House ethics violations over his rent-controlled apartments, failure to pay taxes or report income, questionable fundraising while using Congressional letterhead, and preserving a tax loophole for an oil industry executive and potential donor to a graduate school named after Rangel. Last month, Obama said, "I think Charlie Rangel served a very long time and served his constituents very well, but these allegations are very troubling, and, you know, he's somebody who is at the end of his career, 80 years old. I'm sure that what he wants is to be able to end his career with dignity, and my hope is that happens."
Rangel told reporters after the forum, "My dignity is 80 years old. How can somebody so much younger tell me how to leave with dignity?"