House Republican leadership stripped Congressman Steve King (R-Iowa) of his committee assignments on Monday evening removing him from the House Judiciary Committee and House Agriculture Committee after meeting with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California) on Monday afternoon, The New York Times reported.
McCarthy over the weekend promised he would take action over King’s controversial remarks during a New York Times interview where he asked, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive? Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?”
King on Friday during a speech on the House floor attempted to explain his remarks and their context while repudiating white nationalism and white supremacy.
. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) condemned King’s comments on Saturday morning:
. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) told a reporter from Axios that he condemned the remarks as well.
. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), whose Presidential campaign was endorsed by King in 2016, called King’s statement “stupid.”
King said in a statement to Caffeinated Thoughts said McCarthy ignored the truth:
Leader McCarthy’s decision to remove me from committees is a political decision that ignores the truth.
The truth is as follows:
One of my quotes in a New York Times story has been completely mischaracterized. Here’s the context I believe accurately reflects my statement.
In a 56 minute interview, we discussed the changing use of language in political discourse. We discussed the worn out label “racist” and my observation that other slanderous labels have been increasingly assigned to Conservatives by the Left, who injected into our current political dialog such terms as Nazi, Fascist, ‘White Nationalist, White Supremacist,— Western Civilization, how did THAT language become offensive? Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?’…just to watch Western Civilization become a derogatory term in political discourse today. Clearly, I was only referencing Western Civilization classes. No one ever sat in a class listening to the merits of white nationalism and white supremacy.
When I used the word ‘THAT’ it was in reference ONLY to Western Civilization and NOT to any previously stated evil ideology ALL of which I have denounced. My record as a vocal advocate for Western Civilization is nearly as full as my record in defense of Freedom of Speech.
Ultimately, I told him ‘You have to do what you have to do and I will do what I have to do.’ I will continue to point out the truth and work with all the vigor that I have to represent 4th District Iowans for at least the next two years.
State Senator Randy Feenstra (R-Hull) who announced his candidacy against King last week responded to the news.
“One week ago, I announced my candidacy for Congress because our district desperately needs an effective conservative leader to represent our communities in Congress,” Feenstra said. “Sadly, today, the voters and conservative values of our district have lost their seat at the table because of Congressman King’s caustic behavior.”
At least three Democrats – Congressman Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), Bobby Rush (D-Illinois), and James Clyburn (D-South Carolina) have filed or said they would submit resolutions censuring King for his comments. McCarthy told reporters Monday evening he was not ruling out supporting a resolution censuring or reprimanding King.
Photo credit: Dave Davidson – Prezography.com