During the run-up to the 2002 Congressional election, I was traveling in South Georgia. One ad, run repeatedly, caught my attention, because it featured candid shots of New York Congressman Charles Rangel whose wavy silver locks brushed the collar of his custom shirt in a style that was more New Orleans than Savannah.
Although race was never mentioned, the voiceover proclaimed that if Democrats won control of the House of Representatives, voters could look forward to the ascension of this obviously dark-skinned man to the Ways and Means Committee chair.
The sun was setting a bright orange-red behind the Statue of Liberty on a recent evening when I visited the newly updated South Ferry terminal in Manhattan. But like the groups of commuters who flocked to the ferry on their way to Staten Island, I wasn’t there for the view.
I had come to corral signatures on a letter in support of health care reform to the Staten Island congressman, Mike McMahon. McMahon was elected last year as a Democrat in this formerly Republican stronghold, and while he’s not on the official roster of the Blue Dogs, he was on the fence about health care.
The incredible hulk otherwise known as Henry Paulson has a plan, and it’s a doozy. For a mere $500 billion (and perhaps as much as a trillion) the country can buy its way out of economic disaster. Certainly that ratchets up George W. Bush’s advice to go shopping after the terrorist attacks of 2001.
My congressman, Democrat Charles Rangel, spent two hours on the phone with Paulson talking about legislation that will come before the House Ways and Means Committee, which he chairs. He discusses the conversation in today’s New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/20/nyregion/20about.html?scp=1&sq=Rangel%20Paulson&st=cse
“It ends up, ‘Trust me, it’s the right thing to do. And if you don’t do it, the economy will melt down. Not only do we have to do this, you have to do this next week,’” Rangel said.
Random reflections on politics, the media, political activism, women's lives and spirituality, often inspired by travel, cultural events or what I read.
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