Steve King Loses It After Being Asked If He Identifies as a White Supremacist

“You’re done.”

Tom Williams/ZUMA

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

Rep. Steve King—the Iowa Republican congressman whose record of racist, inflammatory rhetoric came to a head last month amid revelations that he’d recently met with an Austrian political party with historical Nazis connections—is suddenly less than thrilled to be linked to white nationalism.

During a candidate forum in Des Moines Thursday, King became increasingly agitated after a participant recalled an incendiary 2017 tweet from the congressman that stated, “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies”—remarks King double-downed on despite widespread condemnation. The audience member began to draw a comparison between King’s tweet and the xenophobic social media posts by the suspected shooter in Saturday’s Pittsburgh synagogue massacre. “You and the shooter both share an ideology that is fundamentally anti-immigration,” the participant said.

“Do not associate me with that shooter,” King said angrily. “I knew you were an ambusher when you walked in the room, but there is no basis for that, and you get no questions, and you get no answers.”

The heated exchange continued, as the participant asked what qualities might distinguish King’s views from that of the shooter’s. “But do you identify as a white supremacist?” he asked.

“Stop it!” King shouted.

“Then why did you meet with a white supremacist organization in Austria?” 

“You’re done,” King said, before telling security to remove the questioner.

The tense moment comes as King faces an unexpectedly tough challenge to his re-election bid as controversy builds over his rhetoric.

 

KEEP MOTHER JONES CHARGING HARD

You're busy, so we'll keep this short: We need to raise $325,000 over the next month to help fund the hard-hitting, fiercely independent reporting you get from us. It's a pivotal moment for our democracy, accountability, and so much more—but you already know that, you just read a Mother Jones article. If you can right now, please consider supporting our work with a donation so we're ready for the hard work ahead.

payment methods

KEEP MOTHER JONES CHARGING HARD

You're busy, so we'll keep this short: We need to raise $325,000 over the next month to help fund the hard-hitting, fiercely independent reporting you get from us. It's a pivotal moment for our democracy, accountability, and so much more—but you already know that, you just read a Mother Jones article. If you can right now, please consider supporting our work with a donation so we're ready for the hard work ahead.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate