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September 14th, 2010
07:01 AM ET

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Rangel faces five primary opponents amid ethics scandal

New York (CNN) - He's served in Congress for almost 40 years, but Tuesday's primary in New York will be unlike any other for Democratic Congressman Charles Rangel.

The 80-year-old Rangel is fighting five challengers and an ethics trial in the House later this month on 13 alleged violations.

In years past, his re-election has been a slam dunk. While he is expected to win again, Rangel's taking nothing for granted.

On the eve of the primary, robocalls using former President Bill Clinton's voice went out telling voters: "We need Charlie to go back to Washington, to work with President Obama to say, 'Yes.' "

In July, Obama called the allegations against Rangel troubling and said in a CBS interview that he hoped the embattled congressman could end his career in dignity.

Of Rangel's five opponents, Adam Clayton Powell IV has the biggest name recognition. He is the son of the late U.S. Rep. Adam Clayton Powell, who served from 1945 to 1971 and was defeated by Rangel after a scandal-plagued career.

Despite Powell's recognition, The New York Times editorial board said the assemblyman has done little in Albany and instead endorsed Joyce Johnson, a former business executive and educator who has run for state offices. Read more.

Tell us what you think:
What are Charlie Rangel's chances to win his primary? Does this affect what happens in November mid-term elections for the nation?

Obama to push kids to work hard in 'back-to-school' speech
(CNN) - President Obama will deliver his second "back-to-school" message to the nation's students Tuesday, but this year, no one's complaining.

The speech - to be delivered at Julia R. Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - encourages students to make the most of their education opportunities.

"Nobody gets to write your destiny but you," Obama will say, according to a text of the speech released Monday night by the White House. "Your future is in your hands. Your life is what you make of it. And nothing - absolutely nothing - is beyond your reach. So long as you're willing to dream big. So long as you're willing to work hard. So long as you're willing to stay focused on your education."

Obama goes on to emphasize the importance of education in the text, saying it "never has been more important."

"I'm sure there will be times in the months ahead when you're staying up late cramming for a test, or dragging yourselves out of bed on a rainy morning, and wondering if it's all worth it," he will say, according to the prepared remarks. "Let me tell you, there is no question about it. Nothing will have as great an impact on your success in life as your education."

Last year, his first as president, Obama's plan to deliver a similar message prompted an unexpected backlash from conservatives who worried he would push students to support his political agenda. However, the speech Obama delivered at a Virginia school included no political references and was welcomed by conservatives. Read more.

Tell us what you think:
How is the president's speech different this year from the last? If you're a parent, what would you like to hear the president tell your children?

Filed under: American Morning • LIVE Blog
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Average American


    From the 1971 Gravel edition of The Pentagon Papers, Volume 2, p. 201:
    The Diem coup was one of those critical events in the history of U.S. policy that could have altered our commitment. The choices were there: (1) continue to plod along in a limited fashion with Diem – despite his and Nhu's growing unpopularity; (2) encourage or tacitly support the overthrow of Diem, taking the risk that the GVN might crumble and/or accommodate to the VC; and (3) grasp the opportunity – with the obvious risks – of the political instability in South Vietnam to disengage. The first option was rejected because of the belief that we could not win with Diem-Nhu. The third was [never] very seriously considered a policy alternative because of the assumption that an independent, non-communist SVN was too important a strategic interest to abandon – and because the situation was not sufficiently drastic to call into question so basic an assumption. The second course was chosen mainly for the reasons the first was rejected – Vietnam was thought too important; we wanted to win; and the rebellious generals seemed to offer that prospect.

    September 14, 2010 at 9:06 am |
  2. Dan

    If they were bible thumpers that would be much better than the CIA. At least they were trying to provide truth to the Iranians, vice false hope from our government.

    September 14, 2010 at 8:49 am |
  3. art


    Okay. I was just reading on the National Security Archive website. There were audio tapes released of the conversations taking place in August of 1963, with regard to a coup...

    Kennedy Considered Supporting Coup in South Vietnam, August 1963

    Newly Declassified Audio Tapes Reveal JFK Saw Only Negative Choices

    National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 302

    Posted – December 11, 2009

    Read it. There is nothing conclusive in the tapes with regard to Kennedy ordering a coup.

    September 14, 2010 at 8:45 am |
  4. Harriet Meaders

    Re: the online shopping
    Why do we wonder what has happened to small business and the economy. EVERYTHING can be purchased on line or on TV home shopping programs. This has destroyed our department stores, our appliance stores, small independent boutiques, etc. No one has to shop at their local mall anymore. So all the tax breaks to give incentives to start small businesses mean very little today unless you plan to offer your product on line. This, added with outsourcing everything else, manufacturing and even all the insurance customer service personnel, has destroyed our economy. And, we wonder WHY?

    September 14, 2010 at 8:37 am |
  5. Mitch Dworkin, Dallas, Texas

    It is time for the Democrats to stop rooting for tea party candidates to win their primary races for partisan purposes (thinking that they will be easier to beat in general election races) and to start forming a serious alliance with moderate Republicans in order to try and stop the tea party kooks from taking over the Republican Party and possibly the country. "Tea party" is really just a code word that is being used to try and sell the hard core Rush Limbaugh & Sarah Palin wing of the Republican Party as being in the mainstream when they are really the hard core fringe activist base of the GOP.

    The country is getting less and less governable right now (where most of the elected Republicans are saying "No" to nearly all of Obama's legislation for political purposes even if they agree with it or can live with it) because most elected Republicans in Congress fear Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, and their many millions of tea party activists because they are the people who mostly control Republican primaries and who want to purge the GOP of any sane Republicans who will not play ball with them. If too many tea party candidates win in November, then the country will be in a virtually ungovernable stalemate or shut down until at least 2012 because Obama will never be able to pass any of his major legislation through Congress that Limbaugh, Palin, and the tea party does not approve of (because too many Republicans will either agree with them or fear them) while the Republicans will not have enough votes to override an Obama veto even if they do win control of Congress.

    When will grown up Democrats and grown up Republicans realize that they will have to work together in order to try and dethrone the tea party kooks from power over the GOP (there are many more grown up Democrats and grown up Republicans combined than there are tea party kooks even though they make up much of the Republican Party) and realize that everybody loses if the country becomes ungovernable due to the extreme ideology of the tea party kooks who are becoming far too politically powerful?

    Mitch Dworkin
    Dallas, Texas

    September 14, 2010 at 8:33 am |
  6. Average American

    The party line is that they were "hiking and vacationing" in a war zone but no reasonable human being would believe that.

    Smart money says they were CIA.

    September 14, 2010 at 8:32 am |
  7. Ron San ANtonio

    Why were the Americans held in Iran hiking where they were and are these people in any way connected with Bible thumpers or are they CIA?

    September 14, 2010 at 8:25 am |


    September 14, 2010 at 8:20 am |
  9. Average American

    @art.. yes I am sure about JFK. The coup in South VietNam had Kennedy's approval BEFORE it occured and only went forward because of his approval. A matter of record. Did he speak of withdrawing troops from there... while at the same time escalulating the numbers?

    Do some research. It's factual history.

    September 14, 2010 at 8:18 am |
  10. Rickey


    September 14, 2010 at 8:10 am |
  11. francnnam

    The web site you requested is for the Gilt Groupe:

    September 14, 2010 at 8:10 am |
  12. Rickey

    What is the website to the online shopping that you was talk about this morning

    September 14, 2010 at 8:05 am |


    September 14, 2010 at 8:05 am |
  14. Dan

    Talking about Vietnam. Something neat is 40 years ago in North Vietnam we were fighting, losing men and women to war.
    Today, there are churches being planted by missionary groups. Now that is amazing.

    September 14, 2010 at 8:03 am |
  15. art


    Karma means- action. Drinking a glass of orange juice is a karmic act.

    Are you sure about the South Vietnamese President thing? Sounds more like something which would have been ordered by a bought and paid for CIA department head than a president. By 1963 Kennedy had already threatened to disband the CIA.

    He also spoke to withdrawing U.S. troops from So.Vietnam. He wished to close the tax breaks of the oil-depletion allowances. He also wanted to tighten control over the tax-free foreign assets of U.S. multinational corporations, and decrease the power of both Wall Street and the Federal Reserve System.

    In June, 1963, Kennedy ordered the printing and release of $4.2 billion in United States notes, paper money issued through the Treasury Department ‘without paying interest’ to the Federal Reserve System.

    I suppose you, and Newt could go out on a limb and say Kennedy may have been harboring a Kenyan, anti-colonialist world-view, too.

    September 14, 2010 at 7:56 am |
  16. Average American

    Female "hiker" .. aka .. CIA operative.... has been released.

    Man up America... the three "hikers" were spies. The US Government got caught with their pants down.

    lol@ "vacationing" in a war zone.

    September 14, 2010 at 7:51 am |


    September 14, 2010 at 7:23 am |
  18. Average American

    Democrats are constantly spewing about the Bush tax cuts – that helped all Americans but they don't speak about the flip side of that – which is ... if the tax cuts expire taxes for all Americans will raise to cover Obama's give away programs. Democrats wants to raise everybody taxes.

    September 14, 2010 at 7:16 am |
  19. Average American

    South VietNam President*

    September 14, 2010 at 7:13 am |
  20. Average American

    If Rangel is guilty of what he is accused of he should be tarred and feathered and ran out of Congress on a rail. It doesn't matter how long he's been in Congress. If he is guilty he – is guilty. If he is innoccent – he has no worries. Let the process run it's course.

    Education first for our children. I am a parent and I don't want my child to hear anything Obama has to say.

    @art from yesterday.... JFK wasn't killed because he wanted to get out of VietNam. JFK was killed because of KARMA. What goes around comes around. He ordered/approved the assassination of the South VietNam weeks before he himself was killed.

    September 14, 2010 at 7:12 am |
  21. Dan

    That's the answer, let's send a crook (Wrangel) back to Washington. He fits right in with the rest of the crooks.
    Now, about the cancelled Quran burning last week. I submit this question to all Muslims. I am a Christian.
    Why all the violence because someone wanted to burn some paper? Who is it the Muslims truly worship, your God, or paper? If someone was to burn the bible, ok, we can print more.
    I as a Christian, worship God and Jesus Christ, not some paper.

    September 14, 2010 at 7:10 am |