hating the haters
Veteran Congressman Charlie Rangel joined his New York colleague Nydia Velázquez and twenty-four other members of the U.S. House today to speak out against homophobia worldwide, and for gay marriage legislation, of course.
“I believe that hatred of any kind has no place in America. I’m proud to participate in a campaign that promotes the progress that our country has made over the past few years with regard to the rights of the LGBT community,” Mr. Rangel said in a press release announcing his participation. “This is a wonderful way to support their struggle for equality and to discourage discrimination based on who people love.”
Congressman Charles Rangel is the latest Democrat to pile on Mitt Romney after Mother Jones released a blockbuster secret video of one of the Republican candidate’s fundraisers in which he characterized President Barack Obama’s supporters as the “forty seven percent of Americans” who “pay no income tax,” suggested he’d have an easier chance of winning the White House if he was Mexican and called peace between Israelis and Palestinians “almost unthinkable,” among other controversial remarks.
Mr. Rangel issued a statement slamming Mr. Romney’s comments this afternoon describing them as “ridiculous,” far from the truth and amoral considering Mr. Romney’s own income tax situation.
Last week, State Senator Adriano Espaillat’s campaign circulated a tough mailer against his primary opponent, Assemblyman Guillermo Linares, in which they accused Mr. Linares of “betraying” the community by backing Rep. Charlie Rangel over Mr. Espaillat’s bid to become the country’s first Dominican-American congressman earlier this year and for taking campaign contributions from special interests.
Mr. Rangel, a backer of Mr. Linares’ bid, is angry about the mailer. Really angry. So angry, he says, that he was motivated, in the spirit of the anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center, to condemn the controversial campaign literature in question. To that end, Mr. Rangel held a press conference where he gave a ten minute speech expressing his outrage.
showdown in wahi
Despite the long rivalry between the two men, it’s been a fairly quiet campaign between State Senator Adriano Espaillat and his challenger, Assemblyman Guillermo Linares thus far. However, two days before voters head to the polls, both candidates are finally delivering the exciting race political reporters had hoped for all along. In a debate on Inside City Hall last night, the atmosphere remained subdued through the first half, but after both candidates got a chance to question one another, the rhetoric became more charged with accusations flying back-and-forth.
After Vice President Joe Biden infamously told an audience that Mitt Romney is “going to unchain Wall Street,” and concluded they are “going to put y’all back in chains,” Mr. Romney’s campaign cried foul. This was an obvious and unfair allusion to slavery, Mr. Romney’s surrogates argued.
Well, count veteran Congressman Charlie Rangel among Mr. Biden’s critics on the Democratic side of the aisle.
“The Vice President said he’s going to put “y’all in chains,’” Mr. Rangel told The Perez Notes in a recent free-wheeling interview. “Was he talking about slavery? You bet your ass he was. Was he using the vernacular? Yes, he was. Did he think it was cute? Yes, he did. Was it something stupid to say? You bet your life it was stupid.”
Earlier this afternoon, the House Republican conference moved to make tax reform quicker to implement in the future, which according to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, “paves the way for comprehensive tax reform” next year. Democratic Congressman Charlie Rangel was confused by this maneuver, however. In a floor speech, he wondered why the Republicans were so focused on a “pathway to reform” instead of actual reform.
“Some of us will if home and our friends and constituents would say, well, how long are you going to be home?” he began his speech, according to his office’s transcription.
State Senator Adriano Espaillat, who announced his intention to seek reelection after narrowly losing a congressional primary against Rep. Charlie Rangel earlier this year, continues to scoop up endorsements that were unfamiliar to him in his last race as he now faces off against the Rangel-backed candidacy of Assemblyman Guillermo Linares.
The latest endorsement came this morning from the Jim Owles Democratic Club, a relatively influential LGBT backing made even more so by Mr. Espaillat’s new district being contorted all the way down to W. 25th Street, a good 45 blocks further south than his Washington Heights-based district stretched in the last electoral cycle.
State Senator Adriano Espaillat officially moved on to a new race at a meeting of the Northern Manhattan Democrats for Change and the Friends of Adriano Espaillat in Fort George Presbyterian Church tonight, but he still had a lot to say about the close and controversial congressional campaign he just lost to longtime incumbent Charlie Rangel. Mr. Espaillat, who conceded to Mr. Rangel on Monday announced his intention to run for re-election to the State Senate, something he repeatedly said he didn’t plan to do “at this time” during his congressional race.
“Do you want me to run for the Senate? Do you want me to run for the Senate? Do you want me to run for the Senate?” Mr. Espaillat shouted to the cheering crowd in the church before switching languages to officially announce his re-election bid.
“The fire has not been put out. The hope you had has to persist,” Mr. Espaillat said in Spanish. “The unity has to always survive.”
“In 1972, in a June primary — and believe me, I was there — between Allard Lowenstein and John Rooney for Congress in Brooklyn, there were hundreds of people turned away from the polls,” former Senate Minority Leader Marty Connor, who served as State Senator Adriano Espaillat’s attorney when he was contesting his election against Rep. Charlie Rangel, recalled on Capital Tonight last night.
He added, “The lines were incredibly long, people were still voting in some election districts, in my neighborhood in Brooklyn Heights, at two in the morning, which meant that they had been in line since nine at night.”
State Senator Adriano Espaillat is expected to run for reelection after failing to defeat Congressman Charlie Rangel this year, and Mr. Rangel made it clear this morning that he’s backing another candidate, Assemblyman Guillermo Linares, for Mr. Espaillat’s seat. To explain his support for Mr. Linares, Mr. Rangel repeatedly said that it was due to Mr. Espaillat insisting his sole focus was his congressional bid in the campaign.
“The senator had indicated during the heat of the campaign that he would not run for his old seat if he lost, he said that several times,” Mr. Rangel said on Good Day New York. “What makes that a problem, is because people believed he wasn’t running, Guillermo Linares … said he would run and file petitions to run for that so-called vacant seat, and so that does cause a problem.”