House GOP leader vows ac­tion against King over re­marks

Texarkana Gazette - - NATION / WORLD -

WASH­ING­TON—The House Repub­li­can leader said Sun­day he will meet with Rep. Steve King this week to dis­cuss King’s fu­ture and role in the party and promised ac­tion fol­low­ing the Iowa con­gress­man’s re­cent com­ments in de­fense of white supremacy. “That lan­guage has no place in Amer­ica. That is not the Amer­ica I know and it’s most def­i­nitely not the party of Lin­coln,” said House Mi­nor­ity Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.

“Ac­tion will be taken. I’m hav­ing a se­ri­ous con­ver­sa­tion with con­gress­man Steve King.” King was quoted in The New York Times last week as say­ing, “White na­tion­al­ist, white su­prem­a­cist, West­ern civ­i­liza­tion—how did that lan­guage be­come of­fen­sive?” King has in­sisted he is an ad­vo­cate for “West­ern civ­i­liza­tion,” not white supremacy or white na­tion­al­ism.

He said it was a “mis­take” to use phras­ing that “cre­ated an un­nec­es­sary con­tro­versy” and de­nied be­ing racist. McCarthy, who ap­peared on CBS’ “Face the Na­tion,” told host Mar­garet Bren­nan af­ter the cam­eras were turned off that he is re­view­ing whether King, now serv­ing his ninth term, should keep his com­mit­tee as­sign­ments, ac­cord­ing to CBS’ tran­script of the broad­cast. King serves on the Agri­cul­ture, Small Busi­ness and Ju­di­ciary com­mit­tees, and chairs Ju­di­ciary’s sub­com­mit­tee on the Con­sti­tu­tion and Civil Jus­tice.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said “we’ll be act­ing on that” when she was asked about King last week. She did not elab­o­rate. King’s com­ments ig­nited a firestorm, draw­ing con­dem­na­tion from the top three House Repub­li­can lead­ers. GOP Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, who is African-Amer­i­can, aired his dis­ap­proval in a news­pa­per opin­ion col­umn.

“What Steve King said was stupid. It was stupid, it was hurt­ful, it was wrong and he needs to stop it,” Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said Sun­day. King was a co-chair of Cruz’s 2016 pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. Asked if he could sup­port King in the fu­ture, Cruz said: “What I’m go­ing to do is urge ev­ery­one to stand for prin­ci­ples that mat­ter.”

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