The approval of Congress is now down to 21 percent. It fell 10 points over the last month. So either they're really going to stand up for the change for which they were supposedly elected or they're going to be part of the problem and part of the status quo.
STEPHANOPOULOS: You've brought me to my next issue, because there were two big ethics issues up this week. Charlie Rangel, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, facing a series of questions about whether he reported income that he received for rental properties, whether he had the right disclosure of -- of -- of other assets. The Ethics Committee announced that they were expanding an investigation after the House rejected a resolution criticizing him for that.
Also, Senator John Ensign of Nevada facing questions about whether he helped the husband of a former staffer -- another former staffer get jobs and lobbying contracts to cover up his affair with the former staffer. Here's how they responded.
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RANGEL: What is normally done is members wait until the Ethics Committee completes its investigation and its report. That's what I'm hoping happens with the Republicans.
ENSIGN: We absolutely did nothing except for comply exactly with what the ethics laws and the ethics rules of the Senate state.
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STEPHANOPOULOS: George, Ensign down to 22 percent support in his own state, but it seems like, at least in the short run, more problems for the Democrats with Congressman Rangel, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, has tax issues. Now they've had to vote on these resolutions I think at least twice and are starting to lose a little bit of Democratic support. A couple leaked away.
WILL: Charlie Rangel is a genuine war hero, a delightful person, intelligent and a good committee chairman, but his committee writes the tax laws. And there are some niggling people out there who think those who write the tax laws ought to abide by them. Seventy-five thousand dollars in -- in income that taxes were not paid on. He underestimated by about half his assets on his disclosure form to Congress. Do the rules mean anything at all? BRAZILE: Well, Mr. Rangel has admitted his mistakes, and he has called for this inquiry. I don't think we should adjudicate this on the House or Senate floor, in terms of Mr. Ensign. You know, there are other investigations.
Jerry Lewis from California is under -- he's under investigation by the Department of Justice. He's a Republican accused of selling earmarks to family members and friends. Sam Graves from Missouri is under investigation. You know, we will always have some form of hanky-panky corruption up there.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Hence, Congress's low approval rating.
BRAZILE: But -- but I do believe, at the end of the day, that if -- if these -- especially for the leadership, they will have to decide at some point if Mr. Rangel needs to step aside, in terms of his chairmanship of the Ways and Means Committee. I think the speaker and others are waiting for some action by the Ethics Committee before they take...
STEPHANOPOULOS: And they want to get through health care, but it has to happen before 2010.