So how bad can being censured be?

Rep Rangel is about to get a bunch of fingers shaken at him by Congress.

He’s squirming big time over this. It seems to me that facing Congress when they read off charges is much more preferable to getting locked up or kicked out of the House. He’s otherwise not getting fined, penalized, demoted, or even noogied.

So, what’s the big deal? How’s he really getting punished? Maybe he’s not likely to be nominated for too many panels or committees, but he gets to go home and doesn’t even have to wear any ankle bracelets, tell his neighbors he cheats on his taxes, or report to a probation officer.

At worst, he has to sweat in front of Congress while Pelosi reads off a statement. 15 minutes later, the world’s attention will get drawn to some other issue and by the next day, it will be Rangel Who? So what’s so bad about getting censured?

He’s supposed to pay back some taxes too according to HR1737.

They don’t indicate how much… nor is it very clear whether he is to pay the interest and penalties a normal taxpayer would.

It assures one’s name on a rather short list of members of Congress who have been called out for misbehavior. Only 14 others in the history of the House of Representatives have been censured, most recently in 1983 when two House members were censured for having a sexual relationship with an underage page.

Granted, it is not as bad as going to jail or being expelled. But I suppose one could ask the question, “What’s so bad about being convicted of a crime and only being sentenced to probation?”

Charlie doesn’t much care … the Democratics applauded him after censure and he’s now making excuses in a press conference claiming he won’t blame others… and then blaming his staff.

It’s like being wrote up at work.

Under House rules, a congressman under censure loses any committee chairs he holds – but I believe Rangel’s already lost that. Public humiliation is a mighty blow to a public man, however, and Rangel fought hard to get a private reprimand. In addition, the censure probably puts the final nail in the coffin for the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service, the new CCNY school that was to cement his legacy. I believe he was planning to retire anyway, but to see his career and his dreams end this way, and to have to stand there while the charges are read – believe me, he’ll be doing well to stand up straight.

And, of course, there’s the money.

I can’t agree that this is worthy of the breach of ethics he was convicted of. He did try to, sorry, wrangle his way out of this, to no effect.

If I were convicted of crimes, and my only punishment was to stand up in court and be scolded , I’d consider myself lucky.

I think he was very fortunate. So, he might lose a cushy committee chairmanship, big deal. He still gets his salary, retirement, health plan and all the other perks. That is worth a little embarrassment.

If this happened to someone in Japan, he’d have committed suicide already.

It’s definitely shameful.

Censure is nothing to sneeze at, but I’d have voted to expel him.

He is being publicly humiliated. He doesn’t like it. The only worse punishment is being expelled. I think they reserve that for people convicted of crimes. As far as I know he has not been convicted or charged with crimes.

I’m sure he doesn’t like it, but it doesn’t appear to me that he is the least bit humiliated.

The arrogant bastard didn’t know he had to report rental income on his tax return for about 15 years but thought he knew enough to be one of the most influential Democrats on the tax writing committee.

He claimed he didn’t know he could start a legal defense fund (Maxine Waters could have told him that) so was without a lawyer.

But he is a Korean War veteran … as he couldn’t help but point out throughout the process.

I’m wondering if he’s pulling a Brer Rabbit, acting like censure is the worst possible punishment ever, in order to fool the House into thinking they’re really being hard on him.

Public humiliation? Embarassment? Look at the man’s hair. Clearly, he cannot be shamed.

I think the House didn’t want to lose his D vote, so that’s why he isn’t being expelled.

He comes from a solidly Democratic district, so that is most certainly not the case.

While not commenting on the specifics of the Rangell case, it seems that from the history of expulsions, censures, and reprimands, the charges against Rangell do not seem to be on the same level of gravity as the offenses for which five prior congressmen were expelled.

Those expelled from the House were for joining the Confederacy or for being convicted of criminal offenses such as bribery and racketeering. As serious as the misconduct of Rangell is, it really doesn’t rise to that level.

Keep in mind this is only what the House of Representatives are doing to him. They have no direct control of whether or not he faces criminal charges.

Of the options that were available, the House chose a pretty severe one. Censure is the second-highest sanction available. Expulsion is the only higher penalty and that’s only been used in five instances of really serious crimes.

The House could have easily justified giving Rangel a reprimand instead of a censure - a reprimand would have been more usual in offenses like this.

So I feel the House did its job and did not let Rangel off easy.

This. “Oh Pleeeeease don’t censor me Briar Fox, anything but that!”

I’m not saying it has never occurred, but I think that is a quite the harsh thing to say about everyone in Japan.

I was wondering about this. Does being censured mean you lose committee chairs forever with no possibility of ever getting another one, or can you get them back after, say, the following term?

Remember, this is a body that has a member that was impeached and convicted by the Senate for corruption and perjury.

The House recommended Hastings be impeached by a 413-3 vote. Hastings was later elected by the voters of Florida’s 23rd district. So I’d blame those voters for Hastings’ ongoing presense in Congress.