Rangel’s Draft

A conspicuous side-note to Charlie Rangel’s mostly triumphant appearance yesterday at the National Action Network was his continuing, defiant advocacy of the idea of reinstating the military draft.

Here’s what he told the audience:

“I don’t really care what you think of the draft. But I’ll tell you this. If they thought for one minute that included in that 21,000 would be someone from their home town, their family, their community, they wouldn’t even be thinking about it.”

Rangel’s proposal on the draft is effectively a symbolic protest measure, since it has garnered virtually no support in either party. But it’s certainly interesting to see an official so secure in his standing that he can stand by an idea as politically radioactive as this one — both to the administration hawks it’s aimed at and to the anti-war liberals it’s supposed to appeal to — without the slightest fear of blowback.

It’s good to be the dean, I guess.

– Azi Paybarah