Target Dems' Shell Game: Applaud Paterson, Silent on Rangel Scandal

March 1, 2010

FYI, a version of the release below went out to the following districts: Michael McMahon (NY-13) and Scott Murphy (NY-20).

McMahon’s Shell Game: Applauds Paterson, Silent on Rangel Scandal

New York Democrat Silently Backs Corrupt Colleague


Washington– New York Democrat Michael McMahon is jumping at the political opportunity to criticize his state’s embattled governor, calling on David Paterson to resign in the wake of an embarrassing scandal. But McMahon has been notably silent when it comes to making similar calls for the notoriously corrupt Harlem Democrat Charlie Rangel, who was busted by the House Ethics Committee last week for his crooked dealings while remaining under investigation for others.


“Democratic Gov. David Paterson went yesterday from “the accidental governor” to the lamest of lame ducks.


“And a growing chorus of Democrats across the state, including Rep. Michael McMahon (D-North Shore), says that Paterson should be an ex-governor sooner rather than later.


“Citing the State Police scandal that has rocked his administration, Paterson said yesterday he was folding his recently announced campaign and would not seek a four-year term in the Albany statehouse.


“But McMahon said the governor didn’t go far enough, and he called upon Paterson to resign from office and hand off to Lt. Gov. Richard Ravitch, a veteran of city and state government.”


‘[Paterson’s] staying in office as a lame duck is a distraction,’ McMahon told the Advance.” (Tom Wrobleski, “Governor Drops His Candidacy,” Staten Island Advance, 2/27/10)


Is it any surprise that McMahon has kept quiet, silently backing Rangel while pushing for Paterson’s resignation? After all, Rangel has lined McMahon’s coffers with $16,000 in campaign funds. (Source: FEC/CQ Moneyline). Even some of Rangel’s fellow Democrats have called on the House Ways and Means Committee chairman to step aside as McMahon stays quiet:


“After months of holding ranks, some Democrats are finally turning on House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) in the wake of an ethics committee finding that he violated House rules by accepting a Caribbean junket.


“Early Friday, Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) told POLITICO he wants Rangel to quit his powerful committee post — and that was quickly followed by similar statements from a pair of deep south Democrats, Mississippi Rep. Gene Taylor and Alabama Rep. Bobby Bright.” (Glenn Thrush and John Bresnahan, “Dems Call for Rangel’s Gavel,” Politico, 2/26/10)


“It looks like Michael McMahon is more concerned about keeping Charlie Rangel’s checkbook open than doing the right thing and calling on his corrupt colleague to step aside,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “McMahon might be trying to keep the money flowing for his uphill fight for re-election, but he’s not doing himself any favors by silently endorsing the corruption that is running rampant through his own party in Washington. Instead of trying to keep his own pockets lined, McMahon should join the growing chorus of Democrats calling for Rangel to finally own up to his corruption.”