It has been weeks since someone turned over any dirt on Charles Rangel, so let's thank the Daily News
for noticing the Ways and Means Chairman's use of campaign funds to pay his parking tickets
. Of course Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the watchdog group
that broke the story, admits that "it is not illegal to use campaign funds to pay parking fines if they were incurred during campaign activities or in relation to Rangel's position as an officeholder," even if they did reach as large a sum as $1,540. But with the House ethics committee
probing Rangel's previous malfeasances
, and his name a watchword for corruption among Republican operatives
, anything even remotely dicey adds to the "appearance of impropriety" that has been a staple of the muckraking business for two generations. It also lets the world know that Rangel drives the risible PT Cruiser, which is a Volkswagen undergoing a midlife crisis.