Rep. Allen West (R) said he had no plans to apologize to fellow Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D) for a strongly worded email he sent to the congresswoman.

“That is not happening,” West said Thursday on Fox Business Network. “This is a pattern I referred to in that email that goes back to 2010. Finally I think I have the right to stand up and defend my honor and make sure that this type of activity does cease. I sent her a private email, she decided to make it public by releasing it to the news media.”


In response to a floor speech Wasserman Schultz gave in which she criticized West’s defense of Republicans’ “Cut, Cap, and Balance” legislation, West wrote an email in which he said the congresswoman did not deserve his respect.

“Let me make myself perfectly clear, you want a personal fight, I am happy to oblige,” West wrote Tuesday night in the email. “You are the most vile, unprofessional, and despicable member of the US House of Representatives.

“You have proven repeatedly that you are not a Lady, therefore, shall not be afforded due respect from me!,” West concluded in the letter.

Since then Democrats and liberal organizations have strongly criticized West’s email. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee sent out fundraising emails based on the letter, and Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.), the DCCC chairman, called West’s note “disgraceful.”

Wasserman Schultz’s office has said the email was politically motivated rather than personal.

West, as well, has fundraised off his email. 

“Episodes like these show that her agenda isn't to improve the lives of Floridians or to stand on principle,” West writes in a fundraising email. “She’s an attack dog for the liberal, progressive wing of the Democratic Party — plain and simple. And it’s times like this that I need friends with me.” 

When asked whether he could change the language he used in the email if given a chance, West replied: “No, I wouldn't.”

“There are certain ways we speak in the military and I guess I have not learned the D.C. insider talk that these people are used to. Don’t poke me in the chest. That’s the bottom line to that exchange.”