Congress on Tuesday finally confronted Rep. Steve King (R-IA) following his racist comments to The New York Times openly embracing white nationalism.
Members of King’s own party now express shock and horror at the nine-term congressman’s position on white supremacy and white nationalism, acting as though his recent comments were the first time he spoke in overtly racist terms. But as history shows, 2019 is far from King’s first tango with white supremacist rhetoric, and those now standing up against him today were more than happy to stand by him in the past.
After all, we’re talking about a congressman who:
- in 2012, compared immigrants to dogs.
- in 2013, said immigrants have “calves the size of cantaloupes” due to hauling marijuana.
- in 2014, said racial profiling wasn’t a problem in Ferguson, Missouri because offenders caught on video appeared to be of the same “continental origin.”
- in 2015, called DACA recipients “deportables.”
- in 2016, wondered what “sub-groups” other than white people had contributed to Western civilization.
- in 2017, stated that we “can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”
- in 2018, endorsed a neo-Nazi sympathizer running for mayor of Toronto.
And that’s only limiting ourselves to one offensive comment per year.
Now, Republicans who’d previously endorsed King despite his well-documented behavior over the years are turning on him: Sens. Mitt Romney, Joni Ernst, Chuck Grassley, and Ted Cruz have all decided that his New York Times comments were the last straw.
And we’re all left wondering what really changed along the way.