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Rangel: Domestic concerns unresolved on Hill

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Despite the holiday season and the post-September 11 American spirit, many of the nation's domestic concerns have yet to be resolved by Congress, which the Democrats blamed Republicans for failing to adequately address.

"The war has not changed the fact that our children need better schools, the sick need to be assured of patients' rights protections and our seniors need affordable prescription drug benefits," said Rep. Charles Rangel of New York, in Saturday's weekly Democratic radio address.

"Millions of laid-off workers are in need this holiday season," he added, noting that many families do not have access to adequate unemployment insurance or health insurance coverage.

"And yet, Republicans have held hostage every penny of relief until the Senate passes their special interest tax breaks," Rangel said.

Rangel accused the Republicans of "eroding a surplus" through a tax cut that mainly benefited the wealthy, "wrapping the flag around special interests' agendas" and "a $270 billion raid on Social Security trust funds."

He said Democrats would continue to work together and "work our differences in a bipartisan way," despite their differences with the GOP.

Rangel also thanked the American people for their "compassion, generosity and yes, the prayers" for New Yorkers since the September 11 attack on New York.


• Rep. Charles Rangel

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