Iowa congressman and noted white supremacist Steve King’s incredibly shitty week just keeps getting worse and worse.
King’s affinity for fascists all over this earth of ours—once mostly ignored by the conservative movement—has garnered new scrutiny in the wake of last week’s mass shooting and attempted letter bombings. A recent poll has King’s challenger J.D. Scholten virtually tied with King in his deeply conservative district, and earlier this week, National Republican Congressional Committee chair Rep. Steve Stivers denounced King. The group is also reportedly not going to help King in his race.
Perhaps seeking a chance to redeem himself in his home state while he continues to get slammed in the national media, King appeared at the Greater Des Moines Partnership Forum today. It, uh, didn’t go as well as he probably would’ve liked.
To start, there were protests:
The protests, however, paled in comparison to King getting an honest and direct question about what he believes. He responded by completely melting the fuck down. (The video was taken by the blog Iowa Starting Line.)
The unidentified questioner compared King’s statements to that of alleged Tree of Life synagogue shooter Robert Bowers. “You and the shooter both share an ideology that is anti-immigration,” the person started, before King interrupted, “No! Do not associate me with that shooter!”
“I knew you were an ambusher when you walked in the room, but there is no basis for that, and you get no question and you get no answer,” King protested, while standing in front of some sort of weird glass thing. “You’re done, we don’t play these games here in Iowa. It’s not tolerable to accuse me of being associated with a guy who shot 11 people in Pittsburgh...I will not answer your question and I’m not listening to another word you’re saying.”
“But do you identify as a white—” the person questioning King began to ask, before King angrily shot back, voice cracking, “Sir, stop it! You’re done!” King then asked for the person to be kicked out.
Later, King explained the Nazi origins of Austria’s biggest far-right party, which is a totally normal thing to do at the Greater Des Moines Partnership Forum, before referring back to the contentious exchange. “We kicked people out that didn’t need to be here, and they came here to do exactly what they did,” he said.
To paraphrase an extremely wise 9-year old: facts don’t care about your feelings, bud.