They've got muck; we've got rakes. TPM Muckraker

Boehner To Rangel: Step Down Till Ethics Probe Is Complete

Au2sz1hnaaibpracxe42
Newscom / CD1

And today, reports Roll Call, GOP House Leader John Boehner sought to capitalize on Rangel's woes, asking him to step down as chair of the Ways and Means committee until a House ethics panel wraps up a probe of his finances.

That investigation is focused on various issues, including Rangel's failure to pay taxes on rental property he owns in the Dominican Republic, and his use of multiple rent-controlled apartments in Harlem.

In a letter to Rangel, Boehner wrote:

As chairman of the powerful House committee, entrusted with the responsibility of writing the tax laws that affect every law-abiding American citizen, you, along with the Speaker and other leaders of the majority party, have an obligation to help set the pace when it comes to standards of official conduct. By relinquishing the gavel voluntarily while the Ethics panel does its work, you would demonstrate your respect for this obligation.

Of course, Nancy Pelosi will be the determining factor here. So far, she's been backing Rangel. But more revelations, or a damaging verdict from the ethics panel, could change that...

Progress overnight on deployment of new commenting system. We hope to move into a short beta-testing phase shortly.