Two days after the election, defeated Congressman Ron Klein finally called to congratulate his successor, Congressman-elect Allen West.
The call came at about 3:15 p.m. while West was being interviewed by Battle ‘10 at a Starbucks in West Palm Beach. Things started cordial and West said he appreciated the congratulations, but the brief conversation turned curt when Klein asked about West’s family.
“The fact that he asked me how my family was doing really upset me, because after all the very nefarious and nasty things he was putting out there that affected my family, I didn’t appreciate that whatsoever,” West said.
During the campaign, Klein repeatedly attacked West for personal financial issues, and a mailer sent out by the Florida Democratic Party accidentally disclosed West’s Social Security number.
West won the 22nd-district seat by eight points, and his victory was clear on election night. A West staffer told Battle ‘10 that the campaign had waited for a call from Klein, but that the congressman’s staff communicated Tuesday evening that he was unavailable. Klein’s statement on the “hard-fought campaign” also makes no mention of West.
“I think that for whatever reason he feels still that I should be responding to his agenda and his schedule, which, you know, if he had a sense of character and a sense of honor, he would have done the right thing election night,” West said.