Congressman-elect Allen West (R-Fla.) said he plans to join the Congressional Black Caucus next year.Listen to his reaction as to how his defeated opponent waited days to call and congratulate him.
West, one of two black Republicans elected to Congress in Tuesday's election, said he plans to join the Democratic-dominated bloc, to challenge, in West word's, the CBC's "monolithic voice."
"I plan on joining, I'm not gonna ask for permission or whatever, I'm gonna find out when they meet and I will be a member of the Congressional Black Caucus and I think I meet all of the criteria and it's so important that we break down this 'monolithic voice' that continues to talk about victimization and dependency in the black community," West said on WOR radio.
"We've got to turn this thing around, and I think it's time for some different voices to be in that body politic," he added.
West hasn't been shy about giving grief to President Obama, the nation's first black president, grief on issues of race. West accused the president of exploiting race for political purposes after his administration decided not to prosecute members of the New Black Panther Party on allegations of voter intimidation in the 2008 election.
Congressman Ron Klein, the incumbent, never got a hold of him to concede until Thursday, and that has West hot under the collar. "Congressman Klein called me right before you walked up -- about 3:15," he told CBS12 during an interview.
"I found that very disrespectful, reprehensible," West said. "And the fact that he asked me how my family was doing, really upset me because all of the nasty things that he put out there that affected my family. I didn't appreciate that whatsoever."
To say the campaign was nasty is an understatement. But Klein told CBS12 over the phone that West has his wires crossed. He explained he did not phone him election night because the race hadn't been called.
"For whatever reason, he feels that I should still be responding to his agenda, his schedule. If he had a sense of character or honor, he would have done the right thing election night."