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Underdog Faulkner Makes Final Harlem Campaign Stop

Michael Steele (L) stumps for Michel Faulkner (R) in Harlem. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Michael Steele (L) stumps for Michel Faulkner (R) in Harlem. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

diamond_feature Marla Diamond
I began my career at WCBS in the fall of 1997 as the station's New...
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NEW YORK (WCBS 880/AP) –Rev. Michel Faulkner chose a homeless shelter in Harlem as his final campaign stop in his bid to oust Democrat Rep. Charlie Rangel from his seat in the 15th Congressional District.

“I wanted to have this meeting because I wanted to hear from you and I wanted to look you in the eye and say I care about you,” Faulkner said.

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reported that Faulkner was the underdog, but said people were “fed up with Mr. Rangel.”

WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reports from Harlem

Rangel, a senior member and former chairman of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, is accused of financial and fundraising improprieties. He has acknowledged some ethical lapses, including his failure to pay taxes on time and his belated financial disclosures. An ethics trial, set to begin Nov. 15, will determine whether he violated standards of conduct.

RNC Chairman Michael Steele stumped for Faulkner last week but the party hasn’t given him much money. But despite the fact 79 percent of the voters in his district are Democrats, Faulkner remained optimistic.

Faulkner, a black 53-year-old social conservative who opposes abortion rights and gay marriage, said he decided to run for Congress because he was “tired of greed and corruption choking America.” He dismissed Rangel, a longtime fixture in Harlem, as disconnected from the challenges the community faces.

(TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)