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Allen West opens a leadership PAC

The Broward Republican and tea party favorite has opened a leadership political action committee, a fundraising arm that can help him contribute to other candidates and raise his political clout.

West's Guardian Leadership PAC was established in February. The New York Times reports today that a number of other freshman GOP'ers are opening similar accounts. It notes they're typically used to pay for political travel and make contributions to other members of Congress. Contributors can give up to $5,000 a year and the money can't be used for the politician's congressional campaign.

West, a member of the Armed Services Committee, recently returned from his first congressional trip -- a day visit to the detention center Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

"I found detainees have first class medical care, access to 21 satellite TV stations, and bountiful meals," he tweeted Tuesday morning.