The video: Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) is a newcomer on Capitol Hill, but he's wasting no time making his presence known. West, a Tea Party star and Iraq War veteran, drew rousing applause from a crowd of supporters in his district over the weekend by delivering an impression mocking Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for dismissing the small-government protest movement as a flash in the pan. "Ah, you know, the Tea Party, they're going to go away," West said in a whiny, nasally voice, making a face and crouching meekly. (See the video below.) West then countered Reid by saying, "Well, let me tell you something Majority Leader Reid, the American people are not going away."
The reaction: What a "hilarious" impersonation, says Joe Schofstall at Eyeblast.tv. "Everyone already knows that Rep. Allen West is made up of 100 percent awesome, but this just solidifies it." It's easy to see why West is "a Tea Party favorite," says Jonathan M. Seidl at The Blaze. He's certainly willing to take the fight to the opposition. If nothing else, this speech revealed that West has big plans for himself, says David Catanese at Politico. Before he tears into Reid, he douses rumors that he's looking to run for higher office, although he certainly seems to enjoy the speculation. Watch West's speech, and his impersonation of Reid around the 1:30 mark: