Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Dan Seals: Looking for Love From New York's Charles Rangel

As we mentioned previously, it seems like it’s time to add another name to the goon squad of ethically-compromised Dan Seals supporters: Representative Charles Rangel of New York.

Last week the New York Times reported that Rangel is living in four apartments and is paying less than half the market rate for them. He manages this feat by abusing a rent-control program intended to help needy families, and his landlord lets him get away with it because Rangel helps him get permits for new apartment buildings. All in all Rangel saves about $30,000 a year and thus is violating the Congressional gift ban which he voted for!

This week it’s the Washington Post's turn. The Post reports that Rangel, who chairs the House Ways and Means committee, is pressuring businesses with legislation before his committee to donate to the “Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service” or, as the House Republicans have dubbed it, the “Charles B. Rangel Monument to Me.” Rangel has already secured $2.5 million in earmarks for the foundation and is looking to raise about $28 million more from private donors.

“He has crossed the line,” says F. Christopher Arterton, the Dean of George Washington Universities Graduate School of Political Management. “[He] is a prominent public servant and may deserve a center at City College. . . . But I think one has to be careful about how one raises the money for that. The danger is that it begins to blur the lines between whether a quid pro quo is implied by this or not.”

So how does all this connect to the Pup? Well, Rangel has given quite a bit to Dan’s campaign and Roll Call reports that he’s poised to give a lot more. Roll Call reported earlier that Rangel has set up a joint fundraising entity with 10 highly-touted Democrats who are challenging Republican House incumbents or are running for open seats, including… you guessed it… the 9th District’s own Dan Seals.

A fundraiser is planned for August 6th -- under the auspices of Rangel’s annual birthday fundraiser at New York’s swank Tavern on the Green restaurant – but this year, it will benefit the new campaign committee, the Rangel Victory Fund. Ironically, Aug. 6th is full two months after Rangel’s 78th birthday.

So far, Dan's political patron Rangel has given his campaign $7,000 and that’s not taking into account whatever Dan’s cut is from the fundraiser.
Here’s where you can really see the contrast between Mark Kirk and the Pup. Mark Kirk works to keep politicians from using public funds to erect monuments to themselves. He stopped Ted Stevens’ $200 million + “bridge to nowhere” even though Stevens is a fellow Republican. And he spoke against the Rangel earmarks, saying:

The gentleman from New York is a distinguished combat veteran, with 38 years service in this House. But we have seen people leave this House to great glory, and to even be elected President or ambassador, captains of industry. And other of our colleagues have gone straight from this Chamber to jail. And the decision is best made by history. The collective wisdom of our rules is that, in general, we don't name things after ourselves when we are great and powerful, [when] no independent judgment could be leveled…. I worry about setting the precedent of everyone else naming things after themselves.

Who wants to bet that if Rangel was our Congressman, instead of the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center, we'd have the Charles Rangel Health Care Center (if we had one at all).

As typical for Seals, to date, Seals hasn't said anything to distance himself from Rangel. After all, Rangel is a fellow Democrat and Dan needs (and will take) all the money he can get.

And there is the fundamental difference, folks: Kirk holds both parties up to an equally high standard; Seals only manages outrage for Republican abuses. Kirk fights politicians who misuse their office and public funds; Seals asks them for fundraising help.

Any honorable politician would return any donations and refuse to benefit from Rangel's fundraiser. But, Dan may not have that luxury, considering the tight race with Kirk and the huge advantage in available funds that Kirk currently enjoys. Although, if history is a guide, Seals has been known to bow to pressure once the spotlight is shown on his questionable fundraising activities, such as taking an envelope from former Congressman Dan Rostenkowski (which turned out to be a campaign contribution from Rostenkowski’s wife) at the end of one of Dan’s night classes at NU.

It's amazing how Dan just keeps getting caught buddying up to unsavory people. Convicted felons like Bob Creamer and Dan Rostenkowski, ethically-compromised politicians like Debbie Wasserman-Schulz, Chicago ward bosses and now Charlie Rangel; the list goes on and on.

Tenth District voters believe in good government, and they are independent thinkers. If Dan thinks they're going to put up with his Chicago-style shenanigans just because he thinks he looks like Barack Obama, he’s dreaming.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow -- $7,000? Seems like an odd amount...how does that break down?

Anonymous said...

Great post, TA, and thank you for pointing out the antics of this very powerful political hack. I hope that the catwoman or one of her loyal followers reads your post today. According to sicko Ellen, it's ONLY Republicans who do shady things, it's only Republicans who sully the system. Charlie Rangel and many others just like him give new meaning to the phrase politics as usual. Point in fact: reading Seals FEC report showed something very interesting!! A man who died in February 'gave' our Dan a 1K contribution in May. Isn't that amazing? I wonder what Ellen Beth Gill would say or how she'd explain it! I forgot - only Republicans are 'guilty' of all the sins of the world. Chicago type politics is alive and well right here in the 10th District on the Democratic side.

Team America said...

Anon 8:06 - here's how the contributions break down:

National Leadership PAC (Rangel's Leadership PAC) $5,000; and


Rangel for Congress
$2,000.

Anonymous said...

Seals is corrupt:

1. Lisa Madigan launched an ethics investigation of his campaign in 2006.

2. Seals was recruited for office by Robert Creamer (Rep. Shakowsky's husband) who was convicted of multiple felonies.

3. Rep. Rangel is now his biggest backer and even the New York Times says he is corrupt.

Seals is scheduled to get more dirty Rangel money August 6th.

WilmetteLife said...

TA:

Once Seals collects more of Rangel's dirty money, Seals may have enough to take his Wilmette house off the market.

Anonymous said...

This appears to be yet another case of TA blaming candidates for using the system which is a result of OUR votes. The current campaign finance laws allow a PAC to donate up to 5k to any political campaign and allow any one person to contribute up to $2,400 ($1,200 for Primary and $1,200 for the General election). Thus, to fault Seals for the problems caused by a broken system, a system which Mark Kirk has taken full advantage of (he's raised more money then ANY other Congressional candidate) is frankly ridiculous. I would concede that Charlie Rangel isn't the definition of an honorable Congressman, but to group Seals and Rangel together is, again, flawed logic. In fact, Kirk took in over $668,000 in PAC contributions--so it's a little hypocritical to fault Seals for taking "blood money" when Kirk is taking even more.

Until Next Time,
A Concerned Colonial

Cubbie84 said...

Seals was recruited by a felon (Creamer).

Backed by a corrupt politiciaqn (Rangel), and

Investigated by our Democratic Attorney General (Madigan).

Anonymous said...

Well, concerned who ever you are, you are painfully out of touch. Let's first talk about what any one individual can give to any candidate in an election cycle: $2300. for the primary and another $2300 for the general. A PAC can give $5,000 for the primary and $5,000 for the general.
But let's address the 'point' you thought you were making in your post. Charlie Rangel heads the very powerful Ways and Means Cmte. in the US House. That's for starters. Perhaps you should read a bit about all the perks he has given himself, beginning with his sweet deal in rent controlled housing in NY. When all the details are made public I think any decent person would run, not walk away from this slimy hack.
And you're comparing what Congressman Kirk has raised from individuals and yes, from organizations who truly respect and appreciate his efforts to help the environment, healthcare, education, Israel, Human Rights organizations to what Rangel has raked in? So what's your point?
The incredible support that our Congressman is receiving comes from people who want to keep him doing all that he has been doing for us in Congress. Nothing shady, nothing that can't stand up to strong sunlight. And if you think that legitimate PAC contributions represent 'blood money' then you are woefully ill informed and have no idea what you're talking about. Get over it and understand that Congressman Mark Kirk has more than earned a Fifth Term in Congress.

Anonymous said...

A Concerned Colonial- I don't think the issue is how much Seals TOOK from Rangel but Seals TAKING money from Rangel.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:51 you are right on target. Seals uses poor or no judgment when he's surrounded by the likes of Bob Creamer, his wife Jan Schakowsky, a new-found buddy in Dan Rostenkowski and now, the height of sleeze, Charlie Rangel. TAKING money from him and TAKING advice from convicted thugs like Creamer show a dangerously ignorant moral compass.

El Rider said...

Great post, Seals' fundraising is an issue that should resonate in the 10th (I really liked "IL. 9th's own..") as most folks don't want machine politics to infect their district, with good reason.

I do seem to recall that one Ms. Gill (if I may call her that) over at Ellen's Tenth was in such knee-jerk hate Mark Kirk mode that when Mark helped to halt the funding of the "Bridge to Nowhere" she supported the project in Imagine No Way to Get to O'Hare.
http://ellenofthetenth.blogspot.com/2006/06/imagine-no-way-to-get-to-ohare.html

My love for shooting fish in barrels forced me to comment a year later
http://flyingdebris.blogspot.com/2007/07/bridge-to-nowhere-finds-supporter.html

People should be reminded of those Dan Seals will be beholden to, Charlie Rangel and Ellen Beth Gill make for a good start.

Anonymous said...

Here's another one of Dan Seals' greatest ethical hits:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3DyH9YLOVX0

Anonymous said...

While I cannot find myself defending Seals on his acceptance of money from Rep. Rangel (as I previously agreed with you all in saying), it is shortsighted for this forum to think Mark Kirk is immune from similar dealings. A perfect example would be Mr. Kirk "conveniently" missing a vote last year on landmark legislation that would allow the federal government to negotiate directly with drug providers to bring down the cost of prescription drugs for those using Medicare, instead of allowing private insurance companies to exclusively negotiate with drugs companies (a deal in which both the drug producers and insurance companies turn a very healthy profit at the expense of our tax dollars). The irony here is that 2 of the largest donors to Rep. Kirk are (surprise, surprise) major producers of both pharmaceuticals and medical technology. If we are arguing about the power of money in campaigns, also look at the fact that Mr. Kirk voted both in favor of the initial Bush Tax Cut and for the extension of it in 2006. It is no wonder that he has received over $172,000 in contributions from wealthy investment bankers who need customers and want to shelter their own money. The Bush Tax cut helped the top 10% of our nation at the expense of the other 90%, yet people wonder why we run a budget deficit in the billions.

Attack Dan Seals all you want, but the bottom line is that Kirk isn't immune from it. I would rather have a Representative that will fight for the majority of Americans, especially those on Medicare, then one who will pander to the elites and help the few at the expense of the many.

Until Next Time,
A Concerned Colonial

Anonymous said...

The problem with dan and chuck rangel's association is that it shows dan has the values of pay to play democrats in chicago. Rangel was villified on capitol hill last week as well because he's working over time to bully lobbyists into becoming his new mafia. That is not change, and not what this country needs.

As for our democratic friends that are visiting to say that mark takes pac money, yes he does, everyone does, but from having worked on the Hill and seen some interesting ways of raising dough, this goes above and beyond.

Also, Congressmen are not idiots, they raise millions of dollars, the thousand they get from a drug company is not going to buy a vote, particularly for moderate republicans who are always targets on those issues.

Dan needs to return not only this money but to come forward with all dough gleaned from fundraisers he has held with Rangel and any other members of congress since he ran to demonstrate his ethics.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy the talk of him being investigated. Wow, he was investigated, but nothing came of it. Welcome to America, you are innocent until proven guilty...and in the end nothing was found.

And as you all should know, when someone requests an investigation the AG is REQUIRED to investigate even if there is no evidence behind it.

Anonymous said...

Really, anon 10:35?

There have been repeated requests for investigations of wrongdoing (we even sent documentation) in a couple of governing bodies up here in the 10th district but the AG doesn't have time to look into it.