African-American Congressman-Elect: Tea Party Is About Principles, Not Racism

Two midterm winners will be making history when they take office in January.

Retired Lt. Colonel Allen West and South Carolina State Representative Tim Scott will mark the first time two African-American Republicans will serve in Congress since 1996.

West defeated incumbent Ron Klein to win Florida's 22nd Congressional District, while Scott beat Democrat Ben Frasier in an open contest for the 1st District of South Carolina. Both men had Tea Party backing, as well as the support of Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

The historic wins come in the wake of accusations of racism in the Tea Party movement.

During a Saturday interview with Fox News, West said his win "has nothing to do with racism and everything to do with principles."

West added that he was drawn to the movement's values of "limited government, constitutional principles and free market for enterprise solutions."

The Atlanta native was part of a Republican power grab in the House, with the GOP taking more than 60 congressional seats from Democrats. The election has been compared to the 1994 midterm, where Republicans picked up 54 seats and took over control of the House.

West tells Fox News that the 1994 election gives him hope that President Obama and the Democratic-controlled Senate will take a more moderate approach.

"You saw Bill Clinton move to the center. He worked with Newt Gingrich by way of the tax cuts and also cutting back on government spending and government growth," said West. "All of the people who say it can't be done, we've already seen the precedent established."