POLITICS
01/03/2011 09:18 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Allen West: 'I Didn't Learn Anything' From Controversial Chief Of Staff Pick

Incoming Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) explained this weekend that he hadn't learned anything from his initial decision to pick as his chief of staff a conservative firebrand radio show host with a history of inflammatory statements.

"Well, I think first of all what you saw was an attack from the left against Joyce Kauffman and there are some other issues with that, but they did not play the full clip of her speech when she gave that, I think it was the 4th of July," West told Fox News Sunday. "So once again, it was the editing sound biting. And I didn't learn anything from it, because you just adjust and you continue on. So Joyce Kauffman was a very instrumental and helpful person in our campaign and she was the one that interviewed my current chief of staff because she knows the good match."

West has since replaced Kaufman, a Florida commentator who had notoriously advocated for the hanging of illegal immigrants and said "if ballots don't work, bullets will," with Washington insider Jonathan Blyth.

Following the first dustup, he blamed the criticism on both "racism," as well as "sexism and misogynist behavior" by the liberal media, a line of reasoning that West appeared content on continuing on Sunday. He also continued his own attack on Democrats.

Asked by host Chris Wallace if he was willing to stand by his comments that the "liberal, progressive" agenda was "tyrannical, socialist, despicable," West responded that he was.

"I think it is," West said. "When you look at the things that happen in our country and the nationalization of so much of our production -- being it an automobile industry, being it a health care industry, being the fact that we had an amendment in the health care law that said the federal government is going to take over education. When you look at the fact we're creating more victims and making people dependent on the government, I would not have agreed with extending unemployment benefits with 13 months. I think that if we extent these unemployment benefits, take it through the winter time."

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