New York (CNN) – Embattled lawmaker Charlie Rangel, who is embroiled in an ethics investigation, celebrated his 80th birthday Wednesday with a lavish party at New York's Plaza Hotel.
"This sure ain't no funeral, is it?" Rangel boasted, as a parade of high-profile politicians turned up for the gala.
Among the attendees were New York City Mayor Mayor Michael Bloomberg, New York Gov. David Paterson, and singers Harry Belafonte and Dionne Warwick.
Guests were treated to a performance by Warwick, who appropriately sang, "That's What Friends Are For."
New York (CNN) - Embattled lawmaker Charlie Rangel, who is embroiled in an ethics investigation, celebrates his 80th birthday Wednesday - but the event may lack much of its promised luster.
The "birthday gala" is being held at The Plaza Hotel in New York City, a day after the 20-term congressman apologized on the House floor for causing any embarrassment by violating chamber rules.
In a video montage accompanying an invitation sent out to supporters late last month, former President Bill Clinton delivered his birthday wishes.
Washington (CNN) - Veteran Rep. Charlie Rangel apologized on the House floor Tuesday for causing any embarrassment by violating chamber rules, but he insisted he is not corrupt and refused to resign.
In a sometimes rambling speech, the New York Democrat defiantly challenged the House ethics committee to move faster on holding a public hearing on the 13 counts of alleged violations against him.
He also challenged fellow House members of both parties to kick him out if they want to get rid of him.
"If it is the judgment of the people here that I should resign," then the ethics committee should expedite its consideration of the charges against him, Rangel said.
(CNN) – Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-New York, said on the House floor Tuesday that he has no intention of resigning from Congress.
"If it is the judgment of the people here that I should resign," then the ethics committee should expedite its consideration of the charges against him, he said.
But "I am not going away. I am here."
Rangel is facing 13 counts of ethics violations, including a failure to pay taxes and properly report income.
Washington (CNN) - Embattled Rep. Charlie Rangel remained defiant Thursday, vowing to fight charges brought by the House ethics committee and dismissing President Obama's comments about the veteran House member retiring with dignity.
"I don't know why the president of these great United States would say something like that, I guess he believes eighty is old," Rangel told reporters after delivering a speech at Columbia University.
Obama suggested last week that the New York Democrat was at the end of his career.
"I think Charlie Rangel served a very long time and served- his constituents very well. But these allegations are very troubling," Obama said in an interview with CBS News' Harry Smith. "He's somebody who's at the end of his career. Eighty years old. I'm sure that what he wants is to be able to end his career with dignity. And my hope is that it happens," Obama added.
Asked if he was considering resigning, something ten of his fellow Democrats have urged him to do, Rangel said that he has a right to be heard.
Washington (CNN) - The ethical complaints against Rep. Charlie Rangel have caused enough anxiety among House Democrats that ten caucus members have called for his resignation.
Although those ten members come from red states, blue states and swing states, the similarities among them are striking. While Rangel is popular on Capitol Hill, his history with these representatives is short - all rode into Congress on the 2006 and 2008 Democratic tidal waves. Six were elected in 2006, in the wake of Abramoff, DeLay and Foley Republican scandals with the Democratic House leader, future Speaker Nancy Pelosi, promising to "drain the swamp" of corruption.
The four members of the 2008 class came to Congress on the coattails of President Obama, who bragged repeatedly during the campaign about his work to pass "the toughest ethics reform legislation since Watergate" with promises of "transparency and accountability."
But beyond those campaign promises, or perhaps because of those promises, the looming Rangel trial in the fall weighs heavily on their electoral fortunes. According to the CNN 100 list of embattled House seats, eight of the ten members are in electoral trouble. Five were ranked as "Most Vulnerable." Those incumbents include: Rep. Mike Arcuri (New York), Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy (Ohio), Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (Arizona), Rep. Walt Minnick (ID) and Rep. Zack Space (Ohio). Two others, Reps. Debbie Halvorson (Illinois) and Patrick Murphy (Pennsylvania), are on the less perilous "Races to Watch" bottom half of the list.
Washington (CNN) - President Obama gave his thoughts on Friday regarding the ethics investigation into New York Rep. Charlie Rangel.
"I think Charlie Rangel served a very long time and served– his constituents very well. But these allegations are very troubling," Obama said in an interview with CBS News' Harry Smith. "He's somebody who's at the end of his career. Eighty years old. I'm sure that what he wants is to be able to end his career with dignity. And my hope is that it happens." Obama added.
Obama's comments come just hours after the House ethics subcommittee recommended that Rangel be reprimanded.
Washington (CNN) - Democratic Members of the New York Congressional delegation expressed support Friday for their colleague Rep. Charles Rangel, despite the charges leveled against him by the House ethics committee.
At a regular meeting of the New York delegation, which Rangel did not attend, the congressman was the first topic of discussion.
Representatives came "to discuss the situation with their embattled colleague," said one Congressional staff aide who was at the meeting.
"I think the New York delegation feels very strongly, very supportive of Charlie Rangel," said Rep. Edolphus Towns, a fellow New Yorker who has served with Rangel for almost three decades. "He's done so much for New York City, New York State and the nation."
Rep. Gary Ackerman, who organized and ran the meeting, said "I thought Charlie should be on the agenda. And with Charlie on the agenda, Charlie thought he shouldn't be at the meeting in case someone wanted to say something that they wanted to openly express. So Charlie wasn't at the meeting."
Washington (CNN) - House ethics committee investigators have recommended that Rep. Charlie Rangel of New York be reprimanded, according to one of those investigators, Rep. Gene Green, D-Texas.
A reprimand would be a relatively light punishment, compared with censure and expulsion. The recommendation was made to the ethics committee before Thursday's public hearing detailing charges against Rangel.
The full committee and the House would have to approve any sanction against Rangel.
Asked about the recommendation, Rangel initially told CNN on Friday that it's "untrue." Rangel's attorney, however, later said that the embattled congressman "misspoke" and the possibility of a reprimand "was one of a number of issues addressed in settlement discussions."