Charles Rangel: The Lion of Harlem

Charles Rangel, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, is under fire. So is the President's agenda

Photography by Melissa Golden for TIME

Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) photographed in his office on Captiol Hill in Washington D.C. on July 24th, 2009.

Charles Rangel was pacing outside a congressional meeting room where members of the House of Representatives were haggling over the health-care bill. Inside, a boiler-room atmosphere had developed: no one was allowed to leave for anything other than a bathroom break or a vote until committee members came up with a way to pay for the health-care legislation that was being hammered out in Congress. Maintaining his usual sartorial discipline, Rangel was wearing a pearl gray suit with a checkered tie and gold tiepin; a crest of gray hair was slicked neatly over the top of his head, and...

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