Despite making racist comments that were condemned by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, Rep. Steve King said he’ll run to keep his Iowa congressional seat.
The Republican representative was condemned overwhelmingly by the House last month, which voted 421 to 1 to condemn his racist statements, including those from an interview he did with the New York Times where he questioned why “white supremacy” was offensive.
“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” he asked a reporter in January.
At the time, King voted to condemn his own statements and spoke out on the House floor against “evil, bigoted ideology.”
Watch the video below:
.@SteveKingIA on House floor: "I want to make 1 thing abundantly clear. I reject those labels ["Nazi" & "fascist"] & the evil ideology they define. I condemn anyone that supports this evil, bigoted ideology…Under any fair political definition I'm simply an American nationalist" pic.twitter.com/fdoDS59oVx
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 11, 2019
But King soon after turned to the offensive, saying his mistake was not his comments but was talking to a reporter. He has continually accused the media of exaggerating his claims.
Now he’s back on the defense after announcing he’ll seek re-election.
A host of Iowa Public Television’s “Iowa Press” program asked King on Thursday if he was sorry for any of the statement he’s made.
“I have nothing to apologize for,” he replied. He claimed the criticism against his comments was “cyberbullying.”
“There was no issue up until October 24,” he claimed. The congressman also hypothesizing that the criticism was a scheme to hurt his campaign and other Republicans in the midterm election. “Part of it was orchestrated, part of it was, I’ll say, good luck on their side.”
Watch the interview here.
According to the Des Moines Register, some Iowa Republicans have already indicated they will run against King in a 2020 primary. But the current congressman said he wasn’t too concerned and offered this message to constituents: “Don’t let the elitists in this country, the power brokers in this country, tell you who’s going to represent you in the United States Congress.”