With nine days remaining until a potential government shutdown, Rep. Allen West of Florida, a GOP freshman and Tea Party favorite, tells National Review Online that his class will not buckle. In an interview, he issued a brazen message to Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.), who has been a leading critic of the Tea Party’s position in the spending debate: go home.
“Charles Schumer’s faux pas yesterday just shows how mindless and out of touch these guys are,” West says. “The Tea Party wants fiscal responsibility. If he thinks that is a bad thing, if he thinks that is a radical thing, he should go back to New York and seek a new line of employment. If he wants to come and talk about fiscal responsibility, I’m in 1708 Longworth.”
West has had enough of Schumer calling conservatives “extreme” for wanting to slash the federal budget and reduce the debt. “No more of this back-and-forth stuff,” he says. “Their name-calling is childish. We are standing on principle, trying to find solutions.”
The former Army colonel hopes to join Tea Party activists tomorrow at a rally near the Capitol. Conservative groups are pushing for Senate Democrats to pass a $61 billion spending-cuts package for the remainder of the fiscal year. West is supportive of their efforts.