As calls increase for U.S. Rep. Charlie Rangel of New York to step down or be removed as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday that she won't take action until she has the full results of an ethics investigation into Rangel's real estate deals and corporate-sponsored Caribbean trips. Appearing on ABC's "This Week," Pelosi said
Rangel's alleged misdeeds have not "jeopardized our country in any way."
Meanwhile, opposition to the Harlem veteran spread from Republicans and newspaper editorial pages to his own party. The House Ethics Committee admonished Rangel on Friday for taking two corporate-sponsored trips to the Carribean in violation of House rules
. The New York Times on Saturday called for Rangel's removal
, citing his "arrogance" at a Thursday hearing of the matter. (The paper has also led the way in investigating Rangel's finances with stories on a sweetheart apartment deal
in Harlem and numerous properties
he failed to report on his taxes.) The Washington Post has editorialized against Rangel
Rangel, who has served in Congress since 1971, has remained defiant, slamming newspapers
for their investigations and criticizing the ethics panel on the House floor.