As I read an article about Charlie Rangel seeking reelection amid calls to resign I’m reminded of a conversation I had after the New York primary a couple of months ago. I was speaking to someone who had run for office in Harlem and Rangel came up.
I asked the person why didn’t he just retire, do some political consulting/lobbying and give someone else a chance. He could even hand pick his successor. 40 years is office is more than respectable and I was wondering what does he have to prove. Why is he still there?
The response was that Rangel’s seniority benefits Harlem in many ways. If he leaves office Harlem loses it’s connection to DC and the federal government in a major way. I’m wondering if it really even matters any more since Obama is no friend and other democrats no longer support him.
Note: I’m not mentioning the name of the person because it was just a general informal conversation and not an interview.