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Allen West Facts

Republican U.S. Representative representing Florida's 22nd congressional district

  • Allen is the first black Republican Congressman from Florida since Josiah T. Walls left office in 1876 near the end of Reconstruction.
  • West was born on February 7, 1961 and is named Allen Bernard West.
  • West served in the United States Army in Iraq and was a civilian adviser in Afghanistan. He achieved the rank of lieutenant colonel in his 20+ years of service.
  • He worked as a civilian adviser to the Afghan National Army in Afghanistan.
  • On May 29, 2007, West was the Republican candidate for Congress in Florida's 22nd congressional district and lost the election by a margin of 9.4% of the votes.
  • In 2010 election, West defeated incumbent Ron Klein by a margin of 8.6%.
  • West married Dr. Angela M. Graham on Christmas Eve in 1989.
  • In April 2012, he made a controversial comment that he 'heard' as many as 80 House Democrats are communists.
  • He raised over $1.5 million in the 2011 second quarter to support his 2012 reelection bid.
  • The National Journal's Cook Political Report named him to be of the top 10 Republicans most vulnerable to redistricting in 2012.
  • On January 5, 2011, he became the first Republican to join the Congressional Black Caucus since former Congressman Gary Franks retired in 1997.
  • On February 1, 2012, West announced that he would run for reelection from the new 18th Congressional District, which consists of a majority of the previous 16th Congressional District.

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