Though the presidential election passed without issue in the Sunshine State, Florida is once again at the center of a vote counting controversy.
After election night, Florida Democrat Patrick Murphy emerged with a slim lead over his opponent, congressman and Tea Party star Allen West. Since then, Mr. West’s campaign has been pushing for a recount and in a letter sent to the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections Gertrude Walker and the county’s Canvassing Board this morning they outlined one of their “serious concerns”–an alleged “malfunction” of the memory cards used to scan ballots in that county.
“If satisfactory answers are not forthcoming, we may need to direct our attorneys to take further legal actions to resolve these serious legal questions about the canvass of the election in St. Lucie County,” wrote Mr. West’s campaign manager Tim Edson.
Yesterday, a spokeswoman for Florida Congressman Allen West told us an article by Miami Herald gossip columnist Jose Lambiet claiming Mr. West, while serving in Iraq as an Army Lieutenant Colonel in 2003, sent his wife a letter asking her whether she was “committed to being my porn star” was a “garbage story.”
“He hasn’t produced a letter, so, as of now, there’s no letter,” Mr. West’s spokeswoman Michele Hickford said of the lurid tale.
However, Mr. Lambiet, who wrote that he decided to “withhold publication” of the full letter “because of its nature” said he emailed Mr. West’s campaign prior to publishing the story and received no response.
Mr. Lambiet declined to show the letter to Politicker, but he provided us with a screenshot of an email he said he sent to another West campaign spokesperson, Tim Edson last Thursday before the story was published. The email included a PDF file Mr. Lambiet identified as the letter in question.
On Thursday, Miami Herald columnist Jose Lambiet published a story on his blog, “Gossip Extra,” claiming he obtained a handwritten letter Florida Congressman Allen West sent to his wife, Angela, while he was serving in Iraq as an army lieutenant colonel in 2003. According to Mr. Lambiet, in the missive, the tea party favorite asked his wife whether she was “committed to being my porn star.” Politicker spoke today to Michele Hickford, a spokeswoman for Mr. West’s campaign, and she angrily declined to discuss the letter.
“We’re not going to comment on this crap; it’s just a garbage story,” Ms. Hickford said.
Conservative Florida Congressman Allen West is having a fundraiser in New York City October 1, however, in spite of what the invitation says, he won’t be holding the event in a Meatpacking District nightclub that is at least a decade past its heyday, Lotus. The official invite for the luncheon says it will be held at “The Lotus Club,” which has been closed for years. Mr. West’s event is actually being held at The Lotos Club, a private “literary club” on the Upper East Side.
Florida Congressman Allen West appeared on Fox & Friends this morning to discuss a campaign commercial released by his rival that shows him punching an old white woman in the face. Mr. West, who is African-American, said he believes the ad is evidence of a double standard where liberals are not rebuked for making racially charged attacks that would get conservatives in hot water.
‘Think about this, think about if the Republican Party or a conservative PAC ran a picture of a black Democratic politician or congressman punching white women and white seniors. I’m sure that MSNBC, NBC and the Huffington Post and everyone would be going apopleptic right now,” said Mr. West. “But once again, there are different rules.”
Mr. West said liberals feel like it is open season for them to target black conservatives because the Democratic Party has African-American activists, specifically the NAACP and the reverends Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, “well-placed.” As evidence of this, he cited the fact that none of these activists came to his aid when the controversial ad was released.
Florida Congressman Allen West had a rather interesting response to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s threats to block the fast food chain Chick-Fil-A from opening a restaurant in the Windy City due to the CEO, Dan Cathy’s, admission he doesn’t support same-sex marriage. Mr. West brought up the Chick-Fil-A controversy during an interview with CNBC’s Rick Santelli today on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade.
“I had to come up from down South because I wanted to try to open up a Chick-Fil-A franchise here in Chicago,” said Mr. West.
However, it doesn’t seem like the congressman is really putting his money where his mouth is.
Lena Dunham, the star, creator and producer of HBO’s hipster-ific series Girls, took to Twitter today to encourage her more than 200,000 followers to take on the Tea Party by “eat[ing] dope shit” at a series of dinners dedicated to raising money to defeat a “targeted list” of Tea Party incumbents picked by a liberal super PAC. The dinners are hosted by hosted by a group called Downtown For Democracy and Ms. Dunham’s real-life best friend, Audrey Gelman (who uses the handle @grumplstilskin on Twitter and works as press secretary for Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer) is a member of the Downtown For Democracy Board.
“Want to eat dope shit for a wonderful cause? Support D4D and my oldest best #girl @grumplstiltskin,” Ms. Dunham tweeted along with a link to the dinner series.
Yesterday Florida Rep. Allen West said that Nazi propaganda master Joseph Goebbels would be “very proud” of Democrats, after polls showed that Congress was deeply unpopular, but that Republicans generally scored even lower.
“If Joseph Goebbels was around, he’d be very proud of the Democrat Party because they have an incredible propaganda machine,” Mr. West said. ”I think that you have, and let’s be honest, you know, some of the people in the media are complicit in this, in enabling them to get that type of message out.”
Congress is poised to narrowly avert another shutdown.
Senator Liz Krueger discussed the possibility of a Republican coup in the state senate.
Mayor Bloomberg doesn’t think people in wheelchairs are capable of taking cabs.
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is standing up for her friend Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
Yesterday, Florida Republican Allen West took exception to some comments from Wasserman Schulz on the House floor about how he was forsaking South Florida’s seniors, and he sent an email calling her “vile, unprofessional, and despicable” and “not a Lady,” among other things. (Ironically, West lives in her district.)
This afternoon, Gillibrand sent an email to supporters with the subject line: “nothing is more ladylike than fighting for your values.”