Rep. Allen West (R-FL), a veteran who left the military after admitting to abusing an Iraqi policeman, is now slamming the GOP for exploiting the troops in the government shutdown fight.
The House passed a bill on Thursday funding the military for the next six months and keeping the government open another week, but Democratic leaders rejected the measure over its inclusion of $12 billion of additional cuts. Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has accused Democrats of hurting troops, but West said in a statement to CBS on Thursday that he was “disgusted at the perception that Leaders in my own Party…are now using the men and women in uniform” even as he voted for the measure himself.
“The House Majority has now placed the funding for the Department of Defense and the funding for the troops down as a bargaining chip,” West said. “In the last 100 days, the House Majority could have passed at any point in time a separate stand alone Appropriations for the Department of Defense and the funding for our men and women in uniform.”
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.