If you're looking for any evidence that the Debt Ceiling Vote was truly a compromise for both Democrats and Republicans, you needn't look any further. Both Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and Allen West (R-FL) have both voted in favor of the legislation.
What's ironic about this pair falling on the same side of our nation's most contentious debate this year is that they've been sparring over this very issue with vigor unmatched by any other dueling legislators.
According to the Schultz camp, West is a "sexist" and waging a "war on women and the elderly". According to Allen West himself, Schultz is "not a lady" and therefore doesn't deserve his respect.
Another unlikely pair of legislators to fall in line with each other for obviously very different reasons would be Alcee Hastings (D-FL) and Michele Bachmann (R-MN). Bachmann, a Tea Party member like West, is the legislator who championed the idea of not raising the debt ceiling in the first place. Both Hastings and Bachmann voted against the debt ceiling compromise bill.
If these two (Allen West and Debbie Wasserman Schultz) can agree on a compromise - there is indeed hope for the rest of us... Or is there?
Recently, the Wilton Manors Business Association (WMBA) was forced to cancel an invitation for Allen West to speak at their event on August 8th. The speaking engagement was first championed by Celeste Ellich, the owner of a real estate agency, who is currently President of the association.
A number of association members were unhappy about West being asked to speak at the engagement and a few threatened to withdraw their membership. Some boycotts were haphazardly started and a petition began circulating.
According to sources close to Ellich, she even claimed to be receiving "death threats" over the situation. This claim of death threats has not been verified by anyone.
So why were the businesses so upset? Evidently, a lot of it has to do with West's anti-gay rhetoric and disrespect for women - particularly Schultz. In fact, a non-partisan organization made up of business owners and community activists in the Fort Lauderdale area has been set up to continue carrying the torch against West's rhetoric at future events.
As a disclaimer, I joined this coalition yesterday.
The following is the organization's only official statement to the press thus far:
A non partisan group of community and business leaders was formed
today, entitled 'The Coalition for Equality and Fairness (CEF)', to create
an organization designed to protect citizenship diversity and stand up to public
officials who are bullying the LGBT community in order to advance their
own political and personal agendas.
The first order of business for the CEF will be to conduct an open and public educational rally next Monday, August 8, at 6 p.m., in Wilton Manors, entitled 'Allen West: In His Own Words'. Our purpose is not to censor anyone; it is rather to censure those who attempt to abuse us.
The Coalition will be issuing a mission statement on Wednesday evening defining and
articulating its purpose and objectives, at which time the venue for the community rally and gathering will also be announced.
To participate in the rally or the initial organizing efforts of the CEF, please send an expression of interest to firstname.lastname@example.org, co-ordinating outreach at the present time.