Apparently the spirit of Sen. Joseph McCarthy lives on in South Florida Rep. Allen West. While President Barack Obama was speaking yesterday in Boca Raton, West spoke to supporters in nearby Palm City and said he's heard that up to 80 of the 190 Democratic members of Congress are actually members of the Communist Party. Of course, he offered no names or proof to back up the outrageous claim.
A reckless and unsubstantiated claim such as that hasn't been made by a sitting U.S. member of Congress since Senator McCarthy in the 1950s announced he had proof there were several Communist sympathizers and spies working inside the State Department and other levels of the federal government.
After a bunch of ridiculous investigations and hearings, McCarthy was never able to prove his claims and was censured by the Senate. "McCarthyism" is now something of an insult in American politics.
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However, it's really no surprise West has decided to go this route. His entire political career is based on his ridiculous statements. He's now fighting to be more than just a one-term loudmouth and has switched to the newly redrawn 18th District in hopes of remaining in the House.
West also said President Obama would be "scared" to have a one-on-one debate with him, even though debates between rank-and-file congressmen and presidents are virtually unheard of.