Iowa Rep. Steve King, a nine-term congressman best known for being a racist piece of shit, will be challenged in the 2020 Republican primary, according to HuffPost. Iowa state Sen. Randy Feenstra announced in a press release that he would challenge King to secure the Republican nomination.
“Today, Iowa’s 4th District doesn’t have a voice in Washington, because our current representative’s caustic nature has left us without a seat at the table,” Feenstra said in his statement. “We don’t need any more sideshows or distractions, we need to start winning for Iowa’s families.”
By “sideshows,” we can assume that Feenstra means “blatant white nationalism.”
In the 2018 midterms, King won his ninth term, but only barely. He beat his Democratic opponent J.D. Scholten by three points. This was almost as bad as a loss for King, who used to win his district by 20 points or more. Trump carried the district by 27 points in 2016.
King seems to have anticipated the challenge. He announced last week that he would hold town halls in each of his district’s 39 counties. The congressman had previously eschewed town halls for fear of the events being disrupted by protesters.
King’s lackluster performance in 2018 and the primary challenge are both most likely a result of the negative press he’s received for things like going to Austria and giving an interview to a white nationalist publication the day after visiting Auschwitz. In the past, public appearances, where he often draws protests, haven’t gone very well for King.
Feenstra is a former EMT in his third term in the Iowa state senate. He’s perhaps less of a racist than King, but he’s also a fairly standard red-state Republican. At one point, he advocated making gay marriage illegal in Iowa by creating a new constitutional amendment. He’s also a Trump supporter, with a campaign website reading “Help fulfill our promise to Make America Great Again!”
“I am pleased to hear of anyone challenging Steve King for Congress,” Kim Van Es, the vice-chair of the Sioux County Democrats, told HuffPost. “But based on Randy Feenstra’s record, I doubt that he would fight for platform issues important to Sioux County Democrats, issues like affordable and accessible healthcare, gun violence prevention, immigration reform, and environmental protections.”
So Feenstra isn’t going to save Iowa from the menace of racism and white supremacy spawned by King’s long tenure. Regardless, seeing King lose would be deeply satisfying.