This Week, the fill-in host Elizabeth Vargas talking to Nancy Pelosi.
“You understand, I mean, with Charlie Rangel. You promised the most ethical Congress in history, and — and, I mean, you gotta understand now why so many Americans think Congress is corrupt. It just doesn’t look good. This Rangel thing just doesn’t pass the smell test.”
PELOSI: Look, I — I served for seven years on the ethics committee. The last thing I would have wanted would be for the speaker of the House to interfere in a political way in what was going on there. That just should never happen. Uh, but the fact is — is that, uh, w-w-what Mr. Rangel has been admonished for is not good. It was, uh, uh, a violation of the rule of the House. Uh, it was not something that, uhhh, jeopardized our country in any way.
No, no, no. Â How could the fact that one of the most powerful men in Congress is corrupt have any effect on America? I mean, after all, all he does is write the tax law. He’s chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.
He doesn’t have any effect on America. No way. Don’t even tell me he’s in the same league as Tom DeLay, who they had to force out of there.
Here’s Pelosi back from November 7th, 2006, election night.
PELOSI: To-day the American people voted to restore integrity and honesty in Washington, DC. And the Democrats in-tend to lead the most honest, most open, and most ethical Congress in history.
Typical of everything the Democrats say: It’s a lie and is not true.
Here’s Paul Krugman from the New York Times. He was on This Week as well during the roundtable, and Elizabeth Vargas says,
“Speaker Pelosi, Steny Hoyer were all calling for Tom DeLay to relinquish his post when he was also admonished by the ethics committee.”
KRUGMAN: It is worth pointing out that none of these things actually seemed to affect national policy. Yeah, I’m unhappy with this. I wish Rangel would go away. But it — it really has no national significance.
Oh, no national significance at all!
Oh, he’s only chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. He’s cheating on his taxes. He’s not reporting income.
On MSNBC, Joe Scarborough says to Senator Durbin,
“You served with Charlie. I served with Charlie. Are you disappointed?”
DURBIN: I want to tell you one thing about Charlie Rangel. When he joined the Army after World War II as an African-American, he was put in a segregated unit. He served in combat in Korea. This man has served his country. I am not going to presume, uhhh, guilt when it comes to Charlie Rangel.
Charlie Rangel is a veteran, so who cares if he’s corrupt? He served in North Korea. Who cares?
He’s corrupt – simple truth.