Over the weekend, Rep. Steve King (R-IA) posted a now infamous tweet about Dutch politician Geert Wilders.
Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies. https://t.co/4nxLipafWO— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) March 12, 2017
In an effort to clarify his comments from that short tweet, King went on CNN and essentially doubled down on his position.
Rep. Steve King: "I'd like to see an America that's just so homogenous that we look a lot the same" https://t.co/9nnRwDEbMW— CNN (@CNN) March 13, 2017
King continued by saying, “It’s the culture, not the blood. If you could go anywhere in the world and adopt these little babies and put them into households that were already assimilated into America, those babies will grow up as American as any other baby with as much patriotism and as much love of country as any other baby. It’s not about race, it’s never been about race … It’s a clash of cultures, not a race.”
While there was some clarification from King’s end about what he meant when sending out that tweet, that’s not what is often perceived by not just the media and liberals, but his fellow conservatives too. This is not the first time that King has uttered something questionable, if not objectionable. Back in July 2016, King’s exchange with MSNBC host Chris Hayes raised red flags.
“This ‘old white people’ business does get a little tired, Charlie,” King said. “I’d ask you to go back through history and figure out, where are these contributions that have been made by these other categories of people that you’re talking about, where did any other subgroup of people contribute more to civilization?”
“Than white people?” a shocked Hayes asked.
“Than, than Western civilization itself,” King replied. “It’s rooted in Western Europe, Eastern Europe and the United States of America and every place where the footprint of Christianity settled the world. That’s all of Western civilization.”
While King’s suggestions are subtle, it would really help if his comments were more explicit the first time around. We’re spending hours trying to interpret what King is attempting to convey because his rhetoric is evasive. In the age of Trump, King’s prose cannot be further from the man sitting in the Oval Office.
If King does mean that the only way to restore western civilization is through white people having more babies, then his worldview needs to be updated. Why should it matter to Steve King, a man in his late 60’s, if white people propagate as a race?
What about the millions of Americans who don’t fit into that racial demographic that conservatives are tirelessly reaching out to to consider embracing their values? The GOP is constantly criticized for being an “all-white” party. Why shut the door on racial, ethnic, and religious minorities from being the next leaders in the conservative movement?
Luckily for every Steve King, there’s a Carlos Carbuelo or Justin Amash, both Republicans, who are ready to call out inane comments no matter which side of the aisle they originate.
I'm an American no less than you are. I love our Constitution and traditions. Am I "somebody else's" baby because my parents are immigrants? https://t.co/TAnBggfnhl— Justin Amash (@justinamash) March 13, 2017
Perhaps King should stop trying to be like the Golden State Warriors and blow a 3-1 lead of the political capital the Republicans currently have. Stick to topics that don’t give Republicans a bad name.