House Speaker Vote for Allen West a Statement D.C. Can’t Be ‘Business as Usual’
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U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, told FOX News his vote for former Florida Congressman Allen West -- rather than to re-elect the House speaker -- was a statement that D.C. “can’t be about business as usual.”
West picked up two votes from among his former colleagues as House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, saw a mini-revolt from inside the party ranks during the speaker election on Thursday.
“When you have so many brilliant, talented people in Congress it doesn’t say anything about somebody not being a nice guy, it just says it’s time for a change at the top,” Gohmert told Neil Cavuto on FOX News Channel.
Gohmert’s view closely mirrors the dissatisfaction expressed by U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Gainesville, after he voted for Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., rather than Boehner.
“My vote today for Congressman Cantor was a signal that I will hold leadership accountable and challenge leadership when I feel that it is the right thing to do -- just like I am held accountable to the people of my district,” Yoho stated after the vote. “However, it was also a signal that I believe in teamwork and will work with leadership to get things done. Congressman Cantor is part of leadership.”
Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., cast the other vote for Allen.
Broun told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution his vote was also about a need to shake up congressional leadership.
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“After careful consideration, I opted to cast my vote for a new speaker of the House,” Broun reportedly told the Journal-Constitution.
“Speaker Boehner is a good man and a good friend, but under his leadership this Congress has failed to address the root of our nation’s fiscal crisis -- the out-of-control spending in Washington. My hope was that we could elect a new speaker, so the 113th Congress would be forced to get serious about cutting spending and restoring prosperity to the American economy and people.”
Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden was reveling in West’s defeat while attending a party with U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Jupiter.
"I'd like to say to all of you, you did the country a favor," TCPalm.com reported Biden telling the crowd at Murphy's swearing-in party in D.C.
Murphy narrowly defeated West, who has become a tea party favorite during his single term for his outspoken views.
Reach Jim Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (772) 215-9889.