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Rep. King Condemned for Racist Remarks – Is Calling for His Removal Ignoring the Voters Who Re-Elected Him?

Is calling for King’s removal ignoring the will of the people?

by Countable | 1.16.19

What’s the story?

  • The House on Tuesday formally rejected Rep. Steve King’s (R-IA) remarks questioning why “white supremacist” and “white nationalist” is controversial language. The vote was near-unanimous, and the Republican Party has also stripped the hardline politician of his committee assignments.
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said King should look for another job.
“Rep. King’s statements are unwelcome and unworthy of his elected position," McConnell said. "If he doesn’t understand why ‘white supremacy’ is offensive, he should find another line of work."
  • While various politicians and papers continue to call on King to step down, Iowa voters were aware of King’s nationalist ideology, racially offensive comments, and ties to white supremacist organizations in November 2018—and re-elected him into office during the midterms. Though King’s comments may be offensive to some, they are protected free speech and not against the law.
  • Is calling for King’s removal ignoring the will of the people?
  • Or as Countable user Roger wrote:
“Politicians should be allowed to say whatever they want and voters have the responsibility to act at election time.”

What did King say?

  • "White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization - how did that language become offensive?" King said in the New York Times interview. "Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?"
  • King later walked back his comments saying: "I want to make one thing abundantly clear: I reject those labels and the evil ideology that they define.”

What is the Countable community saying?

“Rep King is NOT A RACIST! He was speaking of NATIONALISM. Pride in your country, its founders, its laws, its heritage, its people. ALL of its people! There is NO White Supremacy and has not been for decades. Move on people.” -Kathy
“Anything that has to do with hate needs to be swatted. Doesn’t matter if they are Democrat or Republican if you spout hate or support hate you need to go.” -Jeffery
“What’s wrong with what Rep. King said? He absolutely had a right to say it, and yes, snowflakes have an absolute right to be offended.” -RedPill
“Racists and bigots have no business in government because government is there to serve ALL the people, not just those they like.” -Todd
“freedom of speech is freedom of speech, end of story.” -Brian
“Let free speech ring! His constituents will correct him or vote him out if they disagree.” -Bill
“Thank you for standing up and speaking out against any racist member of Congress. Enacting Hate laws in The USA is a priority. We as a Nation need to embrace diversity and our Members of Congress must be Leaders and Role Models in this endeavor. We are stronger together wherever we are from.” -Lisa

What do you think?

Should Congress censure Rep. King? Or is up to his constituents correct him and vote him out? Take action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below. 

—Josh Herman

(Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore via Flickr)

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