Scandal-Tainted Moises Perez Named Rangel's Campaign Manager
Pérez, the former head of the Washington Heights-based Alianza Dominicana community development nonprofit, resigned last year following a city investigation into the group's financing that discovered improper transactions between Pérez, Alianza and a company that lends money to nonprofit organizations.
Rangel was criticized at the time after it came to light that he had funnelled $2.6 million in taxpayer money to Alianza through a grant from the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, which he later defended as supporting a lifeline for Dominican-Americans in Upper Manhattan.
Rangel is facing perhaps the toughest re-election challenger of his four decades in office in Adriano Espaillat, the Dominican-born state senator, who has the potential to take advantage of dramatic demographic shifts.
Rangel's district has changed significantly over the decades and is now majority Latino, after its lines were redrawn to reflect the 2010 census count.
Rangel, who has faced his own ethics problems, said Tuesday he was "lucky" to have Pérez who has a "moral, persuasive following."
"Moises is a pioneer who for decades led the effort to bring the Dominican community in this city into the leadership role it plays today, and I am delighted he has agreed to be the manager of my re-election campaign," he added in a statement.
"With his leadership and support, as well as the support of leaders in the Bronx, Harlem, East Harlem, and Morningside Heights, I look forward to running for re-election and spending the next two years continuing to work for the betterment of my district, our city, our state and our nation."
Pérez was equally complimentary.
"Whenever we needed Charlie Rangel, whether in Washington Heights or anywhere else, he was there," he said in a statement. "I am honored and excited to be able to work to re-elect him so he can continue to do that work for the benefit of all of us."
The campaign has also hired Mike Nieves, who was formally employed by disgraced Queens state Sen. Hiram Monserrate, according to City and State.