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Tim Scott says Steve King's comments damage 'our nation as a whole'

14 January 2019

King made the comments during an interview with The New York Times, and later issued a statement denying that he is a white supremacist and saying, "one phrase in that long article has created an unnecessary controversy".

"Republicans have always stood by Steve King all the way up to and including the night before the election when (Gov.) Kim Reynolds ended her campaign with Steve King up in Sioux Center and then a week later says, 'Oh, Steve King needs to really think about what his future is going to be, '" Price said.

"Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?" he continued. Though he often speaks in dog whistles and thinly veiled coded language, this time King was especially blunt in his bigotry. King is quoted as saying in the report. King asked in an interview with The New York Times published Thursday. Though he came close to being upset by a Democrat this past November due to his controversial nature, the area is probably just too politically conservative to turn on a Republican, even one so desperately in need of ousting.

Later, Scalise said it was important that King "rejected that kind of evil because that's what it is: evil ideology".

"How did that offensive language get injected into our political dialogue?" he said.

Words and phrases such as "racist", "fascist", "Nazi", and "white supremacist" have been "used nearly always unjustly labeling otherwise innocent people".

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Facing blowback, King later sought to defend his remarks, dubbing himself simply a "nationalist" and attempting to offer a distinction between nationalist and nationalism in favor of white people. "Further, I condemn anyone that supports this evil and bigoted ideology which saw in its ultimate expression the systematic murder of 6 million innocent Jewish lives", he said.

King met with a far-right party that has historical ties to Nazis on a trip to Austria last October - for which he faced little more than mild criticism from lawmakers in his own party - but this week his comments sparked a flurry of reactions on social media. The Anti-Defamation League admonished King for the meeting.

King has served in Congress since 2003 and is an outspoken opponent of illegal immigration and multiculturalism. Tim Scott, the only black Republican in the upper chamber of Congress, called out his party's "silence" on racism Friday in a new op-ed for the Washington Post.

Kevin McCarthy, leader of the Republican minority in the House of Representatives, also condemned King's comments.

Lemon noted that King's remarks were part of a long pattern of racist comments from the Congressman, comments that the GOP seems to tolerate. Tim Scott, the lone black GOP senator, wrote in an opinion piece Friday that the GOP should not be silent over King.

King later issued a statement and addressed the issue in a speech on the House floor Friday in which he sought to walk back his remarks. In 2017, King was widely criticized after he declared in a tweet that he agreed with far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders that "our civilization" can not be restored "with somebody else's babies". "I mean obviously we're going to have a lot of time for politics".

Tim Scott says Steve King's comments damage 'our nation as a whole'