New GOP chief of staff calls Pelosi 'garbage'

A newly named GOP chief of staff called the outgoing Democratic majority — and in particular Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) — "garbage."

Joyce Kaufman, the incoming chief of staff to Rep.-elect Allen West (R-Fla.), said: "Over these months I have been blessed to form very wonderful relationships with the West family. I looked at this family and [told] myself, 'How do you not fight and put them up on the pedestal when we've got this garbage up on the pedestal now, people like Nancy Pelosi?' "

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Kaufman, a conservative South Florida radio personality, made the comments on her show Tuesday.

Kaufman, who's hosted her own talk radio show since 2001, is no stranger to controversy. In 2007, she told her audience that illegal immigrants found committing crimes should be killed and then deported.

"If you commit a crime while you're here, we should hang you and send your body back to where you came from, and your family should pay for it," she said, according to the Miami New Times.

In the same year, she also canceled her contract with Comcast after she was asked to "press 1 for English" when calling the help line, the New Times reported. 

Kaufman was an early backer of West and proved one of his staunchest supporters over the course of the campaign. During the campaign, West was a frequent guest on Kaufman's radio show.

West, an Iraq war veteran backed by the Tea Party, is the first black Republican elected from Florida to Congress in more than a century. He's made headlines in recent days for his wish to join the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), a historically Democratic group that hasn't had a GOP member since 1997.

The CBC on Tuesday announced that West, as well as Tim Scott (S.C.), a second black Republican elected in the midterms, are welcome to join the group if they wish. Scott has yet to announce his intentions.

— Shane D'Aprile contributed to this post.