Some bad GOP blood over Loeb switchby George Bennett | May 28th, 2009
Republicans Nick Loeb and Allen West aren’t running against each other. But businessman Loeb’s switch last week from a state House race to a state Senate campaign drew some scorching criticism from congressional candidate West that Loeb characterized as “threatening.”
After getting an e-mail from the Loeb campaign announcing the switch, West fired back a Blackberry response asking to be removed from Loeb’s mailing list.
“My Country and this State are in serious peril. My character and integrity compel me to not support confused, unprincipled political opportunists,” West wrote. “I wish you good health and a prosperous life, but you are not what our State, and certainly our Country, needs at this critical and defining moment. No response required and please, do not cross me. Best regards, Allen.”
Loeb professed puzzlement at West’s response.
“I’m not sure why he sent me an e-mail threatening me,” Loeb said.
Loeb was running for the state House seat of term-limited House Majority Leader Adam Hasner, R-Boca Raton. But when Senate President Jeff Atwater, R-North Palm Beach, announced last week that he is running statewide for chief financial officer, Loeb jumped into that race. State Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, dropped her House reelection bid to enter the Senate race as well. Term-limited state Rep. Carl Domino, R-Jupiter, is also running.
Atwater’s Palm Beach-Broward Senate district overlaps much of congressional District 22, where West got 45.3 percent against better-financed Democratic Rep. Ron Klein last year. West is running for the seat in 2010.
West and Loeb met this month when West attended a fund-raiser headlined by former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani for Loeb’s state House campaign. West wasn’t there as a contributor but said he was a guest of Broward County GOP Chairman Chip LaMarca.
“I have the same principles (West) heard when he came to my fund-raiser,” Loeb said today.
Asked about the “do not cross me” line in his e-mail to Loeb, West said, “Don’t come back at me with the behind-the-door type of stuff to undercut me. That’s what that meant….I’m not threatening anybody.”