Rangel Describes Trouble with Taxes, Spanish

Charlie Rangel tried to explain his Dominican villa tax problems to reporters yesterday, saying his Punta Cana Yacht Club materials and discussions were in Spanish, which had confused him. The New York Times says he was "greeted with skepticism and surprise" in his district, where Spanish is much spoken, though the paper quotes no residents besides Rangel. (The skepticism was obvious among editors, though: "Yo No Hablo Espanonl, OK?" heds the Post, and the Daily News offers an online poll asking readers if Rangel should resign his office.) Rangel estimates back federal taxes he owes on the property at no more than $5,000, says the Times; his lawyer Lanny Davis adds $5,000 in state and local, but the Daily News reports the total figure at $8,000 per Davis, and the Post puts the gross figure at $10,700. Despite a Congressional investigation (and the rage of blogs like Liberty Lounge and Misblog, which calls the affair "poorly disguished bribery"), Rangel does not expect to lose his seat over it: "Ain't nothin' gonna stop me from gettin' back here next year," he told the Daily News.


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