Conservative firebrand Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) conceded to challenger Rep.-elect Patrick Murphy (D) in a before sunrise dark-of-the-night press release Tuesday morning to Politico. West had refused to concede, and a smooth transition was in suspense while the controversial ideologue exhausted available legal challenges.
In an unusually high profile race, West and his far-Right supporters raised a reported $22 million to out-finance Murphy four to one. Attempting to color his oft-controversial and gaffe-prone public statements, the one term Republican attempted to recolor his bombastic statements as candid honesty. In one of the most contested Congressional races, in the end, district voters did not buy the bluster at the ballot box in sufficient numbers.
The Election night vote counts indicated a very close race, but numbers never reached Florida election law recount thresholds. Despite West’s decrying “activist judges”, his huge war chest was poised to explore all manner of legal challenges to the result. What impact Gov. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) could have on steering the final result loomed over the election as a Halloweenesque specter. A recount in St. Lucie County over the weekend only increased Murphy’s lead, and narrowed West’s quiver of legal challenges.
The Architect of the Capitol, which assigns office space in the Capitol’s complex of Washington buildings, will likely let the defeated West keep his office suite name plaque for the “I-love-me” wall many current and former military officers have at home. On the other hand, the souvenir sign it would have financed a great holiday party for the Architect’s staff on eBay.
For all the Right-wing petitions for succession, nobody is fleeing the country over West’s loss. That was for President Obama’s victory, the “other” black guy.
I can only imagine Rep. Debbie Wassermann Schultz (D-Fla.)’s cheshire cat toothy grin at work this morning were it not Thanksgiving week.