Ala. congressman claims House has 17 Socialists

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - A Republican congressman from Alabama claims 17 socialists are serving in Congress.

Rep. Spencer of Bachus of Vestavia Hills commented about socialists in Congress on Thursday in a speech in Trussville, a Birmingham suburb. He said he worries they may push President Barack Obama too far to the left.

Afterward, Bachus told The Birmingham News that 17 members of the U.S. House are socialists.

But he gave the name only of U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, an independent whose spokesman said Sanders identifies with the Democratic Socialist Party as it is in Scandinavia.

Aides to Bachus haven't responded to messages Friday from The Associated Press seeking an interview with the nine-term congressman.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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