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FEC Investigating Rangel, Report Says

Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., waits for the elevator as he leaves his office on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 2, 2010. AP

After the House of Representatives censured Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) for ethics rules violations, the embattled congressman said, "At long last, this 2-year nightmare is over."

It may not be over yet. The New York Post reports the Federal Election Commission is investigating whether Rangel improperly used funds from a political action committee to finance his legal defense during the ethics investigation against him.

The right-leaning National Legal and Policy Center last week filed a complaint with the FEC charging that Rangel used almost $400,000 in funds from his National Leadership PAC for his legal fees. FEC rules state that members of Congress are limited to using only relatively small amounts of money from their leadership PACs for such legal expenses.

Rangel spent about $2 million on his legal defense during the House ethics committee's investigation. During a hearing of an ethics committee subpanel last month, the congressman said he could no longer afford representation.

Stephanie Condon is a political reporter for You can read more of her posts here. Follow Hotsheet on Facebook and Twitter.