On the list of things that make progressives gnash their teeth and foam at their mouths, little tops an African-American of the conservative persuasion. Even more horrifying to the Left is one who makes clear: “you’re not going to intimidate me,” as Congressman Allen West (R-FL) said at a Tuesday night town hall meeting where leftists, including former Air America host Nicole Sandler (who was later arrested), tried to disrupt the event. From his successful 2010 congressional campaign through today, Congressman Allen West remains unfazed by such tactics. As a result, the attacks against him by the American Left continue.
The attacks began during West’s race for the House of Representatives against Democratic incumbent Ron Klein in what the Palm Beach Daily News characterized as “one of the nastiest campaigns of the season.” Klein’s political ads were a testament to that reality, focusing exclusively on attacking West’s character instead of on the issues. (Disclosure: I live in Florida, close to West’s district, and can personally attest to the tenor of Klein’s campaign.) According to Klein, West was “too dangerous and too extreme.” Klein also revealed that West had accumulated a tax lien and unpaid homeowner’s association dues, and claimed he was tied to the Outlaws motorcycle gang.
West’s responses? The debts were incurred while he was fighting for his country in Iraq and Afghanistan, and they have been paid off. He rides motorcycles, but has no affiliation to the Outlaws. Yet when the Florida Democratic Party made West’s tax lien document public, they included his social Security number in the release to 60,000 voters in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. West characterized the release as “a new low... it is not about character assassination, it is about destruction of a family,” he said, referring to the possibility of identification theft.
New DNC head Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-FL) took time to criticize West as well, making the bizarre accusation that he is “self-described right-wing extremist…who thinks it’s OK to objectify and denigrate women[.]” She extrapolated this from the fact that West writes a column for a biker magazine which has some less-than-enlightened views regarding women. Thus, West is guilty by association. Wasserman-Schultz continued, “Tea party extremists have some real issues when it comes to women that they need to address,” she said. “If they don’t address them, we will, with our voices and our votes.” The people of Florida’s 22nd district apparently disagreed. West beat incumbent Democrat Klein handily, by a 53 percent to 46 percent margin.
Also during the campaign, G. Seth Platt, the son of a Broward County lobbyist, who created the blog No West FL 22 (devoted to attacking West, of course), claimed he was “so alarmed” about West’s candidacy, that he tweeted about how he was willing to “skin you personally West.” Mr. Platt is white, and yet his over-the-top rhetoric directed at a black American was virtually ignored by the mainstream media. The Sun Sentinel reported in January that Platt was employed at his father’s lobbying firm.
On April 8th, an envelope containing white powder was mailed to West’s Boca Raton campaign office. According to a statement from West’s Chief of Staff Jonathan Blythe, a letter mailed with the package mentioned the word “anthrax” and included derogatory comments aimed at the Congressman. ”I thoroughly condemn this act which does nothing but evidence the sick and deranged nature of the perpetrator,” West said in a statement released the same day. “I will continue to serve the constituents of Florida’s Congressional District 22 with honor and integrity.” Though the substance turned out to be harmless, police took the incident very seriously, due to the fact that Boca Raton was the location of the nation’s first fatal anthrax attack following 9/11.
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