Rangel Fails to Declare Free Trip to China

Thursday, 26 Jun 2014 10:39 PM

By Jason Devaney

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New York Rep. Charles Rangel, who was censured by House Ethics Committee four years ago, failed to report a free trip he took to China last summer.

Rangel, who won a tight victory in Tuesday's Democratic primary on the road to his 23rd term in office, went on an all-expenses-paid trip to China with nine other members of the Congressional Black Caucus last August.

Seven of the lawmakers, according to a National Journal report, reported the trip on their financial disclosure forms which were made public this month.

Two others filed for extensions. Rangel, at the time of the original National Journal story, had not filed anything about the trip. After the story was published on Thursday, however, the 84-year-old Rangel's spokeswoman said the "congressman has taken immediate action to file necessary amendments."

The Chinese government paid for the trip, which was set up through the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act and uncovered by National Journal in January. The act gives the green light for foreign countries to bring members of Congress on trips sanctioned by the State Department.

The other nine members of the delegation, who were all Democrats, were Reps. Gregory Meeks, Sheila Jackson Lee, G.K. Butterfield, Andre Carson, Emanuel Cleaver, Marcia Fudge, Hank Johnson, Donald Payne, and Frederica Wilson.

Rangel was found guilty on 11 of 13 counts of ethics charges in 2010, which stemmed from accepting rent-stabilized apartments from a Manhattan developer, failing to pay taxes on rental income from his Dominican villa, and raising charitable donations from companies and corporate executives who had business before the House Ways and Means Committee, of which he was the chairman before he stepped down amid the ethics scandal.

Rangel was also found to have accepted two free trips to the Caribbean from corporations that same year.

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