July 11, 2008

Playing house

NEW: UPDATED BELOW at 2:45 PT Friday

I'm not sure whether elected officials have an out-of-control sense of entitlement that makes them believe they can flout the law just because they're elected officials.

Never mind. I'm sure now. New York congressman Charles Rangel just reminded me.

I'm all for the rent control in NYC, but, um ... four apartments? The New York Times coverage might help put an end to that pretty soon. Best part of the story? Rangel's ill-advised quote before hanging up on the reporter: “Why should I help you embarrass me?”

Note to people breaking the law: If you're going to hang up on a reporter, just hang up. Then say something stupid.

UPDATE: Rangel held a news conference outside his building this afternoon to talk about the Times article. Some of what he said would make sense if it proves to be true -- namely that two of the apartments were already combined into one before he moved in, but they still show up on the state rolls as two single apartments -- but he also apparently spouted off a few weird misdirected arguments -- like that people should let it go because he's old.

But the best line, I thought, was his response to a Times reporter who kept trying to ask about the fairness of a congressman having multiple rent-controlled apartments at a time when the city has a shortage of affordable housing. Said the cong: "I have decided unilaterally that you have asked more than your share."

I'm going to have to use that one sometime.


"Highland Park" Attorney said...

It doesn't matter what party a politician is in, if one of them can get a deal on something, they are going to take it. Republicans and Democrats are the same on this (just google Countrywide Mortgage and preferred rates for US Senators) No matter who you vote for for president, there is not going to be "change" I am sorry to say so don't be fooled into thinking there will be. No matter the candidate, if they are at the top of their respective parties and are the presumptive nominees, they didn't get there by ticking off those who will never want to see these advantages go away.

Your escalator operator said...

Never mind what party (and I know Rangel is a Democrat - no doubt this is pervasive in both parties), I think this starts the moment most people are elected to... anything. See my earlier post, http://sorryfortheconvenience.blogspot.com/2008/05/taking-us-for-ride.html.

bugs said...

If he can do it, why is it really anybody else's business? It's a business deal. It just happens to be that he's another politician who gets favorable things done (this time, at least, it's not sexual) for him and why would he say "no" to 4 apartments?! I certainly wouldn't.
But yes, I agree, dumb comment before hanging up.

bugs said...

so take that!

bugs said...

(the 4:37 comment was posted after the update...just to be clear!)

"Highland Park" Attorney said...

Regarding your intention to try and use the Rangel retort of "I have decided unilaterally that you have asked more than your share.".......I would suggest that it not be tried at home...just a thought.