Iowa congressman Steve King has been a raving, racist lunatic for as long as I can remember. His remarks about immigrants and birth rates are nothing new. This latest outburst regarding immigrants echoes the talking points of the white nationalist movement which has lamented the decline of white America for decades.
Steve King has a new prominence now, buoyed by the nationalist sentiment that put Donald Trump in office. Whether they admit it or not, millions of Americans voted for Trump because they felt that their idea of the United States was slipping away and being replaced by a patchwork quilt of ethnicities and religions they didn’t grow up with.
This sentiment isn’t confined solely to the United States. The backlash against refugees has spread across Europe and has given new fodder to nationalist movements from France to Poland, and beyond.
Over the weekend, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa ) tweeted that Dutch far-right nationalist Geert Wilders has been right in saying that “culture and demographics are our destiny,” adding that “we can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.” Since then, the response from Republicans has been remarkably muted, even though the remark has received wall-to-wall media coverage.
There’s a reason for the GOP reticence about criticizing this sentiment from King: The GOP is now Donald Trump’s party. King’s statement is, at bottom, a particularly explicit expression of the white nationalist ideology that fueled the Trump campaign — and shaped the worldview of top Trump advisers Stephen Bannon and Stephen Miller. Advocates for that ideology are now directing strategy and policy from the West Wing. (Washington Post)
Here is the Tweet in question from Iowa congressman Steve King.
Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies. https://t.co/4nxLipafWO
— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) March 12, 2017
Paul Ryan said that he believes Steve King must have “misspoke” – a statement King then went and doubled down on. Ryan can’t play this off any longer, he has the stinking albatross of racism wrapped around his neck, and Ryan can’t take action against Steve King for fear of angering Trump’s supporters.
Paul Ryan says Steve King "misspoke" in "somebody else's babies" tweet. Misspoke. In a tweet. That King reaffirmed. https://t.co/6rW28UI1XC
— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) March 14, 2017
Because of our free speech rules, ultra-nationalists and racists have found a bullhorn in Breitbart and other sites like it. They swarm Reddit, Facebook, and claim that their despicable ideology has merit because they coordinate to push that hatred into our social media feeds.
The alt-right is hijacking our media, and giving credence to racists like Steve King. The Republican Party is no longer the party of Reagan, it is the party of white nationalists. And Paul Ryan’s refusal to act is proof of it.