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NYT: Despite Scandal, Rangel Draws Crowd

From a cheering New York Times:

Despite Scandal, Rangel Draws a Crowd

August 11, 2010

It was a dramatic but fitting start to an evening that brimmed with political defiance. About 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, as guests began strolling into the Plaza Hotel to celebrate Representative Charles B. Rangel’s 80th birthday, former Mayor David N. Dinkins turned to confront a heckler.

“You know you are attending a party for a crook,” the man yelled.

At that, Mr. Dinkins, a paragon of statesmanship and dignity [sic], raised his middle finger at the man, displaying it for all to see, according to witnesses, whose accounts were confirmed by the former mayor.

The Times calls this “fitting” because to them giving ‘the finger’ is American for “let them eat cake!” After all, Messrs Rangel and Dinkins are part of the Ruling Class.

Who are we peons to question anything they do?

In the past few weeks, Mr. Rangel’s birthday fund-raiser, billed by its organizers as a splashy tribute to a titan of New York politics, seemed to have become an embarrassing debacle.

Democratic lawmakers agonized about showing up. Republicans threatened to turn an R.S.V.P. into a campaign issue. And Mr. Rangel, whose actual birthday is June 11, all but pleaded with would-be guests to make an appearance.

To us it is “dramatic but fitting” that the Democrats would pretend that their fundraiser for this crook is a birthday party. As everything about these people is based upon deceit.

But in the end, the party was a potent display of support and loyalty for the lawmaker, who faces numerous ethics charges, including accusations that he hoarded rent-stabilized apartments and dodged taxes on a Dominican villa.

The big names that mingled amid heaping plates of roast beef, goat cheese and onion rings vastly outnumbered those who bailed out. And a raucous, at times celebratory, mood prevailed as Dionne Warwick belted out her famous pop ballad “That’s What Friends Are For” and Harry Belafonte rubbed elbows with Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

Mr. Rangel seemed to capture the down-but-not-out spirit of the event when he looked out at the packed Grand Ballroom and shouted, “This damn sure ain’t no funeral, is it?” …

We shall see, Mr. Rangel. We shall see.

The state’s senior senator, Charles E. Schumer, and the state attorney general and Democratic nominee for governor, Andrew M. Cuomo, who had relentlessly dodged questions about their attendance, showed up and spoke warmly about Mr. Rangel, steering clear of the ethics charges against him.

“He has fought for New York through thick and thin,” Mr. Schumer said, as Mr. Rangel stood nearby on a stage. “We are so grateful and thankful for that.”

Absolutely. Any sojourn through Mr. Rangel’s district of Harlem will show you all that he has done for that paradise over the last forty years.

A spokesman for Mr. Rangel said that he had sold 800 tickets and that about 600 people had attended.

Hilarious. Only one quarter of those who paid the hefty admission fee bailed. That is a success, at least according to the New York Times.

On Wednesday, however, in the gilded, two-story ballroom at the Plaza, signs of loyalty were everywhere. When Ms. Warwick turned to Mr. Rangel and began to sing “That’s What Friends Are For,” the entire crowd joined in with her.

We had some other song suggestions for Ms. Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over, Wishin’ and Hopin’, Walk On By, You’re My World, I Say a Little Prayer, Promises, Promises, and of course, Make It Easy on Yourself.

By the way, the original headline for this New York Times article was, ‘Congressman Rangel’s Party a Display of Defiance.’ Why did they change it?

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, August 12th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “NYT: Despite Scandal, Rangel Draws Crowd”

  1. Tater Salad says:

    Crooks “hang with” other crooks! They are all the same.

  2. fallingpianos says:

    Circus freaks draw a crowd, too.

  3. Right of the People says:

    Bread and Circuses for the masses.

    When do we get to see them feed a Christian to the lions?

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