CPAC taps Allen West for top speaking spot
February 9th, 2011
12:49 PM ET
9 years ago

CPAC taps Allen West for top speaking spot

(CNN) - Rep. Allen West, the at-times controversial congressman from Florida in his first term, will deliver the keynote address at the Conservative Political Action Conference Saturday.

West announced the news in a tweet Wednesday: "I've been asked today to have the honor of giving the closing keynote address at CPAC Saturday. I'm humbled."

CPAC organizers had asked Sarah Palin to deliver the high profile speech, but the former Alaska governor declined, citing scheduling conflicts.

“Congressman West epitomizes the core conservative values CPAC attendees treasure: a basic belief in human freedom, traditional values, and a love of country based on an appreciation of the nation’s founding documents,” said David A. Keene, CPAC's organizer.

West is an Iraq War veteran who was backed by the Tea Party in last November's election. He is also one of two Republican African Americans serving in the House.

The new GOP congressman recently faced heat over comments directed at Muslim Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minnesota, who he said represents "the antithesis of the principles upon which this country was established."

West defended those comments last week in a town hall when pressed on the issue by Nezar Hamze, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Miami.

"I will always defend your right to practice a free religion under the First Amendment," West told Hamze. "But what you must understand, if I am speaking the truth, I am not going to stop speaking the truth. The truth is not subjective."

Filed under: 2010 Election Live Blog • Allen West
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. once upon a horse

    looks like the "diverse" GOP found themselves a new token. And this guy is far worse than Mike Steele was. Steele just seemed not to be very bright at times, but this West guy is a pure nutjob. I think he's farther to the right than even Sarah Palin is. He claims to have a higher security clearence than President Obama. Right wing wacko and African-American, what a great combo.

    February 9, 2011 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  2. Sgt Schultz

    You have to be kidding me. This guy is a nut. That's the best they can do?

    February 9, 2011 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  3. Tony in Maine

    OH MY GOD!

    Freedom for others is anathema to this bigot. Could they have chosen worse?

    February 9, 2011 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  4. Glenn from Cary

    Apparently the terrorists have won.

    February 9, 2011 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  5. yaho

    Just because he doesn't look like us he got the

    February 9, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I gotta say though, that I was terrifically impressed and entertained by his suggestion that people in his Party actually put in an honest day's work during that whole We-Gotta-Get-Home-For-Christmas thingy. West was all for staying at the office and getting 'er done, his fellow Rethugs....not so much.

    February 9, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  7. Stephen in Bedford, TX

    CPAC just change the meaning of their acronym. It now mean CrackedPAC. West is as big of an embarrassment to the GOP as Palin, Bachmann, Angle, O'Donnell, Paladino and all the other nutjobs out there trying to make a name for themselves. What has become of rational thinking individuals who understand the need to work together, even with people they disagree with.
    John McCain caused this by introducing the country to the "mother of all nutjobs" Sarah Palin. And she went around unlocking the doors of the asylum.

    February 9, 2011 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  8. NVa Native

    tap .... tap.... tap ..... hey nut job .... you're the next nutt up.
    Don't forget your tin-foil hat.

    February 9, 2011 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
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