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Allen West Inches Closer To Defeat in Florida

One of the Tea Party’s favored sons is on the brink of losing his seat in Congress. A recount of early ballots in Florida’s 18th Congressional District shows firebrand Rep. Allen West has fallen even further behind his Democratic challenger, Patrick Murphy.

West now trails Murphy by more than 2,100 votes, more than before the recount. With more than 37,000 votes cast, that puts Murphy’s margin above the 0.5 percent threshold that automatically triggers a recount under Florida law.

West won’t concede the election, but advisers to Murphy say the election is “effectively” over under state law.

The apparent loss means an uncertain political future for West, who has often made headlines for his outlandish comments. A former U.S. Army lieutenant, West has said that Democrats want to keep blacks “on the plantation” and suggested that many Democrats are members of the Communist Party.