A federal appeals court has set a Nov. 13 date to hear oral arguments in Rep. Charles Rangel’s lawsuit against his House colleagues, who censured the New York Democrat in 2010.
Mr. Rangel has argued the House failed to give him due process when it investigated and voted to censure him, and he is seeking to have the smear expunged.
His case has already been rejected by a federal district court, which said he didn’t have standing to sue and, even if he did, the court wouldn’t touch what was an internal House matter, better left as a “political question.”
The judge said that since Mr. Rangel didn’t lose re-election, nor did the House strip him of any power on the Ways and Means Committee — he gave up his chairmanship voluntarily — he couldn’t show an actual harm.
“He has not even plausibly claimed that the House acted outside of its considerable discretion under the Discipline Clause, making it a political question whether Rangel was ‘properly’ disciplined, even assuming the violation of House rules,” Judge John D. Bates ruled in December. “Whether discipline of a member was ‘proper’ is textually committed to the House, and this court may step in only to remedy constitutional violations, which are not implicated here.”
Mr. Rangel has asked the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., to take the case.
The court said it will reveal the three judges who will sit on the panel hearing his case closer to the date for oral arguments.