House Democrats mobilized on Wednesday to rebuff a Republican effort to oust Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) from his post as Ways and Means chairman.
The resolution, offered by Rep. John Carter (R-Tx.), was handily quashed on a 243-156 procedural vote. Had it passed, it would have forced Rangel to step down from his position until an ethics inquiry could be completed.
Following Wednesday's effort, a number of supporters and lawmakers tweeted their dissatisfaction with the vote's outcome, while praising Carter's attempt to remove the embattled Democrat. At the same time, House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) scolded the Democratic Party for failing to remove Rangel, adding the "American people deserve better."
“Today’s vote is just the latest example of [Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)] breaking her promise to have the most ‘open and ethical’ Congress in history," he said in a statement. "Instead of holding Chairman Rangel accountable for his actions, House Democrats are once again circling the wagons and demonstrating their loyalty to a leader who faces serious questions about his official conduct."
Rangel has been under investigation for about a year for a litany of ethics allegations, mostly stemming from information he submitted on recent financial disclosure forms. A number of newspapers, some from his own state, have even called on him to resign his powerful post, but Pelosi has long maintained that she supports the New York Democrat.