September 28th, 2009
05:13 PM ET
10 years ago

Rangel tells Obama to back off of local politics

Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-New York, is making it known he's not happy with President Obama's recent meddling in the state's 2010 gubernatorial race.

Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-New York, is making it known he's not happy with President Obama's recent meddling in the state's 2010 gubernatorial race.

(CNN) - Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-New York, is making it known he's not happy with President Obama's recent meddling in the state's 2010 gubernatorial race.

"The whole thing to me was not presidential," Rangel told the New York Daily News over the weekend. "It wasn't good for the president, and it wasn't good for the governor."

The comments came a week after the New York Times reported that administration officials had asked New York Rep. Gregory Meeks to convey to embattled Gov. David Paterson that Obama would prefer he not run for re-election next year.

The Times reported that the White House is concerned about Paterson's dismal poll numbers becoming a drag on the entire Democratic ticket in New York next year, and would prefer Andrew Cuomo - the state's popular attorney general - carry the party's banner instead.


Rangel also directed fire to his Democratic colleague Meeks, whose district encompasses nearby Queens, for his involvement in the discussions.

"I wouldn't want to be anywhere near it then or now," he said. "And anyone who has been involved in this has to be embarrassed. Period."

It's not the first time Rangel has been critical of the White House's political outreach: The 79-year-old congressman expressed similar frustration last May when the administration actively discouraged New York Democrats from challenging newly appointed Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand in a primary.

Meanwhile, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs would not confirm a separate report in the Daily News on Monday that said the president will not get involved in New York City's mayoral race, where the Democratic candidate, Bill Thompson is trailing Independent Michael Bloomberg by nearly 20 points, according to recent polls.

A spokesman for Rangel confirmed to CNN the accuracy of his comments to the Daily News.


Filed under: Charlie Rangel • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. Hennu

    Unfortunately, this is the Chicago/Illinois style of Politics......it is not pretty and is extremely MIND BOGGLING! Sit back and enjoy, it just got underway in Washington.

    September 28, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  2. Franky, Land of Lincoln

    Rangel is alright, but he does need to pay his taxes and he has the $$$ to do it so don't give me that...

    By the way, isn't it hilarious that Dems are going at it again? Bloomberg seems like a good guy and a reasonable character to name a few but I don't think he wants to get in this game. Gov Patterson? Well, he still needs a lot to learn and Attorney General Cuomo does sound like a good one. But you know who I think can make an impact? Excluding my boy.

    What about Boehner? He's pretty good! He likes to go at it and he's a heck of a speaker, which the GOP need actually for them. Boehner seems O.K but I don't know, he is pretty cool and seems reasonable. After all, he's a Conservative, is what I believe...:)

    By the way, is it illegal to call out people? Oh yeah, I forgot, the Sedition Act was back in the day, LOL!!! 🙂

    Anybody else think we need it back? 🙂 I'm just saying, I'm just saying...we Conserves would like that but an updated one and a good one.

    September 28, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  3. Dana

    Yea they say that now until they need his help for fundraising and for speeches!

    September 28, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  4. Willy Brown

    Rangel you should be in jail.

    September 28, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  5. Steve

    How is this guy not in jail?

    September 28, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  6. yes Obama, stay out of it

    you are doing a good job 95% of the time, stay out of police business, state elections etc.

    things of that nature will do you no good, you are suppose to have the nation's business on your mind

    not NCAA brackets, not superbowls, not NY govenor's race, not who busted into whose house and detained who

    you are doing a good job and have enough to worry about with getting micro politics

    September 28, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  7. Simmy

    President Obama has every right to voice his opinion.....Paterson should recognize that his 15 minutes lasted long enough.....He is polling quite low.....It would be a shame to lose to a Republican because he insisted on pursuing his futile ambitions.....

    September 28, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  8. Well, is it you?

    If President Obama didn't explain to Gov. Paterson what exactly is going on, then who would of? He doesn't exactly listen to the NY'ers and is an ineffectual leader at best. I had to sit through a month of petty, power displays and name calling presented by my wonderful NY State Gov't. Add that to a bad economy and high unemployment... not looking good.

    I respect Gov. Paterson, but this position just isn't a good fit, and NY'ers are saying so. Thank You Pres. Obama for pointing out the obvious – AGAIN!

    September 28, 2009 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  9. Johnny DC

    Obama needs to learn exactly what his role is. He is not the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. He is not the Speaker of the House, nor the Senate Majority Leader. He is certainly not Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and he is not the Governor of any of our 50 states.

    He speaks as if he is all of these things, and makes demands of these separate institutions as if they are obligated to even consider what he demands.

    Open up your eyes, America. This is not what the Constitutional Convention had in mind.

    September 28, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  10. Victim of Liberal stupidity

    I believe that Mr. Traficant has a cell all warmed up for ya Chuckie! You know, it does not matter whether it is a Democrat or a Republican, when are we as citizens going to wake up and demand these elected elite face the same laws we have too? They don't serve us, they serve themselves at our expense! REFORM 2010 and 2012!

    September 28, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  11. Carlos

    Getting a little hot in the kitchen so it's time to go overseas and campaign a little for uhmamaba, and let his henchmen run the country for awhile.

    September 28, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  12. rob

    why ? Patterson is a lousy Governor . Someone needs to speak up. NY'er's have , but seems Patterson can't hear us.

    September 28, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  13. Jon Krieger

    So Rangel & Paterson both have said bad things about Obummer?GOSH, WHAT RACISTS THEY MUST BE!!

    September 28, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  14. bj, Texas

    After all the off shore illegal stuff this clown Rangel has done, how can he be allowd to say this things from jail? Wait a minute, he's not in jail - he's a democrat.

    September 28, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  15. Tough Lady

    States don't seem to want our President or the Federal Government involved until they need help and then they come crying with their hands out begging for money. President Obama is the leader of the party. Get over it and move on. I believe a lot of you people that post this hate are miserable human beings.

    September 28, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  16. Brian

    Were these statements made from his prison cell? Steal a million as an investor your a crook steal it as a politician your a Congressman.

    September 28, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  17. CJL

    First: Pay your taxes. Aren't you supposed to be a liberal tax loving democrat? Practice what you preach.
    Then you can speak your opinion. (not that I disagree at all)

    September 28, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  18. Operation Replacement

    New York's Andrew Cuomo is the one behind the scenes guy who
    wants Patterson to quit. His dad was the one who bullied New Jersey Sen. Bob Torricelli to quit. Mario strikes again!

    September 28, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  19. Tom L

    Maybe President Obama should spend less time talking with local officials about a local election and talk with General McChrystal. One time in 2 months? It almost seems like it's a joke because it sounds so absolutley outlandish....

    September 28, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  20. G2

    President Obama should back off local politics.....Charlie Rangel needs to pay his taxes, stop lying on his tax forms and stop trying to raise my taxes when he won't even pay his own.....If President Obama were to get involved in local politics, he should start by asking Charlie Rangel to resign!

    September 28, 2009 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. domincan mama is obama

    Guess even Rangel can get something right every now and then! Regardless, he needs investigated. Dems = raise taxes because we don't pay them anyways.

    September 28, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  22. John

    It's a historical moment – first time in history the president tells a governer not to run for re-election because he is afraid that it will hurt him.

    September 28, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  23. justin

    Then stop making fools of yourselves.

    September 28, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  24. Wake Up

    Less government! All polticians want our money. Let's give them less power...quit bowing to Obama. Schumer gets most money from financial companies, Obama gets most from drug companies...pick your poison. Only answer.......less federal govt!!

    September 28, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  25. Politics 101

    Exactly Right, isn't that what the primary and caucus process is all about, choosing the best candidate?

    Although have an Black President talk to a Black Governor does eliminate the "race card" as an issue.

    NY and the Nation would have been better off with the former Governor and forgetting about his sexual misadventures. Why is it that it is only acceptable for GOP to have sexual misadventures–is it a conservative thing because sexual misadventure are traditional in politics?–Why is it that only Liberals are chastised and Conservatives are permitted to flaunt their sexual misadventures, even when it's a crime?

    Lesbian relationships are Praised if its a GOP spokesperson!–My advice to the Gay and Lesbian community is just say your Republican-if it's good enough for National Security Chaney, its good enough for you too!

    September 28, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
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