A tweet from Rep. Allen West, R-Fla., calling for volunteers to adopt IED-sniffing dogs has contributed to a situation that Marines might describe as a 'snafu.'
On West's Facebook page, a post stated that the Marine Corps has 400 decommissioned dogs in need of 'forever homes.' West (or a staffer) promoted the page on Twitter and deleted it two hours later. The deletion was captured by Sunlight Foundation's Politwoops, a site that records and posts deleted tweets from politicians. The Facebook post has since been removed.
Information about the dogs was based on a military listserv email sent over the weekend, according to Angela Melvin, West's press secretary. The Facebook post was created because "anything to with the military is important to him," she said. West comes from a military family and served 22 years in the Army, retiring as a lieutenant colonel. Brian Miller of the Marine Corps Systems Command, who West listed as the contact for adopting a dog, was unavailable for comment due to the large volume of calls on his line.
But online discussions reveal some information about what happened.
According to a Weight Watchers message board, there had been "40 dogs once and it had gone out as an interoffice memo but somehow or other someone had added a zero and put it out there publicly." The discussion on Facebook shows that, according to the receptionist, the dogs are only available for law enforcement agencies.
West, one of the most outspoken members of the House freshmen class, is in a tough fight for reelection. It's turned into one of the most expensive House races in the nation, drawing $3.2 million in outside expenditures. That's on top of $15 million that West has raised and $3.2 million for Murphy.