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Politics

11:00am August 4, 2010

Rep. Maxine Waters Denies Ethics Violations, Receives Support from CBC

maxine waters

A week after U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel was charged with 13 ethics violations, House investigators announced a public trial to determine if Rep. Maxine Waters violated congressional rules.

Waters and Rangel are both Democrats and the upcoming trials may not bode well for voter support in November.

Waters’ trial will determine whether the congresswoman helped steer federal funds to a bank in which her husband owned stock, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Waters has strongly denied the accusations, in a statement released on her Web site, “Congresswoman Waters Challenges Investigation.”

“I have not violated any House rules,” Waters said. “Therefore, I simply will not be forced to admit to something I did not do and instead have chosen to charges made by the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct in a public hearing.”

Waters went on to note that she did not attend a meeting that is in question, where the National Bankers Association (NBA) contacted Treasury Department officials to discuss “concerns regarding the crisis facing minority banks.” The NBA represents the interests of minority-owned banks, Waters said, not just OneUnited  Bank, where her husband has investments.

“I followed up on the association’s request by asking then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson to schedule such a meeting, as did other members of Congress,” Waters continued. “Secretary Paulson recognized that the NBA’s concerns about the future of minority banks were valid and arranged for a meeting.

Waters said she did not attend the meeting or participate in conversation.

“However, the suggestion that I could gain personally from one phone call made to assists the National Bankers Association in getting a meeting with the Treasury Department is not credible,” Waters said. “Even the OCE acknowledges that the meeting resulted in no action. Although it leveled the accusation, the OCE also failed to show that I received any benefit or engaged in any ‘improper exercise of official influence.’”

Waters’ supporters are coming to her aid, with Congressional Black Caucus Chairwoman and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) speaking out in a statement:

“Throughout her tenure in Congress and in the California State Legislature before that, Congresswoman Waters has been a tireless and effective advocate for underrepresented and underserved communities and institutions. She continues to be an important voice on those and many other issues and should not have her rights usurped by politicians or the press.”
Meanwhile, in an interview with the Rev. Al Sharpton, the congresswoman said it’s time “to stand up and be proud of the fact that we’re representing our people, we’re representing our issues, and we’re not taking a back seat because somehow somebody believes that every time we move to be an advocate we’re doing something wrong.”
Photo: Courtesy of Life.com


About the Author

Bridgette Outten
A Chicago native, Bridgette has been a journalist since she first wrote for her seventh grade newsletter. Today, that passion is just as strong. She has written for several newspapers, including the Houston Chronicle, the Houston Defender, the Marshall News-Messenger (Texas) and the Springfield News-Sun (Ohio).




 
 

 
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2 Comments


  1. Mark S. Allen

    I Spoke With Congresswoman Maxine Waters — She has earned our full support through these ethics challenges

    Marksallen on 08.06.10 at 10:46 AM | no comments

    Marksallen

    One of the first community organizers to work with Barack Obama in Chicago for over 20 years. Now Associate Editor of The South Street Journal Newspaper and 37 year activist/journalist, recently selected as 2010 Who's Who In Black Chicago.

    Office 312-624-8351 or Cell 773-392-0165

    • Facebook (0)

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    • StumbleToday, I spoke briefly with California Congreswoman Maxine Waters and wanted to tell her personally that as a next generation leader in this Civil Rights movement that I and other next generation and grassroots Black leaders across this country fully support her in her fight against ethics allegations against her. I assured her that I will join Wallace "Gator" Bradley and other national grassroots Black activists and organizers in a public campaign of support for her in her fight.

    I cannot thank her enough for the time she has given throughout her life in public service to help lead, teach, guide, and work directly with young leaders like myself as we grew up as next generation leaders in the grassroots Black empowerment and progressive movement. She taught me and so many others on the consciousness to fight and not apologize for doing all you can to help lift up the least of God's people. She stood with so many of us over the years and we should not hesitate to stand strongly and publicly with her and we will.

    As a former national staff member to the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr and The Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, I often had the opportunity to be in the presence of Congresswoman Waters as we planned and organized so many grassroots political empowerment fights over the years led by Rev. Jackson. As a member of Rev. Jackson's 1988 Presidential Campaign, I often traveled and joined Congresswoman Waters as surrogate speakers for Rev. Jackson's campaign – a campaign that laid the historic foundation for another Chicago community organizer I worked with named Barack Obama to become President Of The United States!

    When I was a Senior Campaign Strategist for Jesse Jackson, Jr's first campaign for Congress, Congresswoman Waters gladly accepted our request to come to Chicago and work directly and "hands-on" with us as we worked the streets in a true grassroots campaign to elect Jesse Jackson, Jr to Congress. I'll never forget the energy that she provided to us all and that example and energy has lived in me and so many others as we continue to stay as grassroots Black empowerment activists and leaders. Yes we all worked for the empowerment of all disenfranshised people through The Rainbow, but there is no apology for doing all you can to empower the efforts and issues of your core Black community and thus Congresswoman Maxine Waters has no apologies to offer in her efforts to empower her core community.

    I am absolutely humbled when I got the call from Wallace "Gator" Bradley and he told me that Congresswoman Waters specifically asked about me and my thoughts on this ethics issue she is facing and where my leadership position would be. I did not know that she would remember me to the point that in a challenging period like this that she would think of me as someone whose leadership she would even think of, so I had no choice but to immediately call her and let her know that she was an important part of my growth as a young leader in the civil rights movement, and that she can add my name to the list of any group of national leaders that support her in this fight, and especially those next generation leaders who use her and her legacy as examples of our current leadership commitment for the future of the Black community.

    So today I stand in support of Congresswomen Maxine Waters and as the founder of The Black Leadership Development Institute, BLDI, I will begin organizing other next generation Black grassroots leaders to issue their public statements of support for Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and as Associate editor of a grassroots community newspaper The South Street Journal, I will organize other national grassroots community papers for their public support., and when we convene the 1st National Convention of Black Wall Street Organizations in Chicago on Friday August 20th, I will submit a national resolution with Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr being present to second the motion in full support of Congresswoman Maxine Waters and her personal and professional integrity as a leader in her home community as to the least of God's people everywhere as a member of Congress.


  2. [...] U.S. House Committee on Standards of Official conduct formally released three ethics violations against Democrat Rep. Maxine Waters of California Monday, days after Waters requested details about [...]



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