The House ethics committee on Thursday accused veteran Rep. Charles Rangel of 13 violations of House rules involving alleged financial wrongdoing and harming the credibility of Congress.
"Credibility is what's at stake here; the very credibility of the House itself before the American people," said Rep. Mike McCaul, the ranking Republican on a subcommittee that will hold a trial-like hearing on the charges against Rangel.
McCaul spoke at the subcommittee's first meeting, which heard the charges against Rangel, a 20-term Democrat from New York running for re-election this year. Rangel was not required to attend and did not show up.
According to committee documents, Rangel earlier filed a motion to dismiss the allegations against him that was denied.