Democrats Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters are fighting for their reputations and perhaps their political careers, trying to stave off investigations against them by the House Ethics Committee. Both seem to be daring House leaders to proceed with public trials, and so far Democratic leaders have been willing to take that dare, refusing to shortcircuit the ethics process.
Rangel and Waters are also prominent members of the Congressional Black Caucus, leading some of their defenders to suggest that they are somehow victims of racism or a double standard. There is no evidence whatsoever to support that contention. To the contrary, the allegations against Rangel and Waters are serious and well-founded, and would require action regardless of the race or political party of the member involved. Rather than attack the Ethics Committee, the Congressional Black Caucus would be better off publicly committing to operate by the rules.
“The racism charge, though, was