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Steve King still doesn’t think of himself as racist

Updated: Feb 4, 2019

#steveking #racism #politics

Over the last few weeks, Iowa Rep. Steve King has defended white supremacy, been reprimanded by his own party leaders, and been stripped of his committee positions in Congress, yet in his mind, he has done nothing wrong — except agree to an interview with The New York Times.

While opening his first town hall since his racist remarks were published in print — when he told the Times’ Trip Gabriel, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” — King said Saturday that his main regret was sitting down for the phone interview when he was only “half-ready.”

“It is stunning and astonishing to me that four words in a New York Times quote can outweigh 20-some years of public service,” he said to a crowd of roughly 70 people who attended the event in Primghar, Iowa. He remains adamant: “I am not a racist.”

”I’ve made more than one mistake, we all have. I should have never done an interview with The New York Times,” he added.

King’s admission earlier this month was met with widespread condemnation. In response, congressional leaders booted the nine-term Republican from his committee assignments, leaving him with little power in Congress.

But given his reputation for making outrageous comments and history of blatantly racist innuendos, King’s remarks are hardly a surprise. In fact, his past comments have been so outlandish and controversial, it’s hard to believe that he had never been formally punished by his party leaders until now. If anything, he’s been lauded for his tenacity by defenders on the far-right fringe, including President Donald Trump. Vox’s Jane Coaston has a highlight reel of King’s career-defining remarks, like the time “he directly compared the existence of the Congressional Black Caucus to having an abortion.”

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