POMPANO BEACH (CBSMiami) – Republican Congressman Allen West made his first public appearance since apparently losing the election for the 18th Congressional District to Democrat Patrick Murphy Tuesday.
West was at a pre-Veterans Day High School Ceremony in Pompano Beach and said his legal challenge to the election results were all about a “fair election.”
“I think the most important thing is to make sure the people in District 18 got a fair election,” West told CBS4’s Joan Murray. “That’s what this is all about.”
Wednesday, West filed a motion to have paper ballots counted and to impound voting machines and all paper ballots cast. The motion was filed against the Palm Beach County Election Board.
West’s attorney’s also asked that any “voting machines and any associated equipment or documentary or record evidence, used in connection with the Election in this Election District be impounded to prevent further voting and/or to declare the intent of voters for votes cast on the Voting Machines.”
West’s attorneys will be in court Friday asking for their motion to be granted. The case was originally supposed to be in court Thursday, but was delayed.
Murphy secured a small lead of a little more than 2,000 votes to oust West from office after one controversial term. Wednesday, Murphy maintained that he was the rightful victor in the general election.
“Last time I checked, we were ahead 2,400 to 3,000 votes,” Murphy said. “So I think that’s a solid win.”
West’s campaign hasn’t conceded and said there were irregularities with the voting in the northern part of the district in St. Lucie County.
“The irregularities I’m talking about are that two o’clock in the morning, we had a 2,000 vote lead and then the votes were recounted, it was a 2,400 vote lead for my opponent. We want to find out about that,” West said Thursday.
Murphy’s slight lead is outside the margin that would require a recount in the Sunshine State.
Murphy has also started asking for donations to help him fight against a possibly prolonged legal challenge from West.
Representative West is a freshman Republican known across the country for his fiery tea party rhetoric. He has been one of the most outspoken conservatives in Washington, famously saying he knew dozens of Communists in the government.
Democrats had been targeting West’s office to flip. West had raised much more money than Murphy, roughly a 4-1 margin, throughout the campaign capitalizing on his national name recognition.