From The NationIn lending his support to Geert Wilders, Congressman Steve King has crossed a dangerous line.
Donald Trump has made no secret over the years of his regard for Iowa Congressman Steve King, and of his determination to embrace most if not all of the incendiary Republican representative's crude "know-nothing" politics of Muslim bashing and immigrant blaming. In the fall of 2014, when he was still just considering a presidential run, Trump traveled to Iowa to headline a private fundraising event for King.
Hailing the congressman as a "special guy, a smart person, with really the right views on almost everything," Trump said then that if he did not seek the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, "I want to see someone who is going to make our country great again, which is basically the same thing as Steve."
The Des Moines Register reported that Trump said his ideology was so in sync with King's that "We don't have to compare notes."
Now Trump is a crude "know-nothing" president who engages in Muslim bashing and immigrant blaming. And King is tweeting about his enthusiasm for Geert Wilders, the Dutch extremist who is the darling of white nationalists in Europe and the United States.
Ahead of this week's election in the Netherlands, where the fiercely anti-immigrant Wilders is waging an aggressive campaign as something of a "Dutch Trump," King tweeted:
"Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies."
Rhode Island Democratic CongressmanDavid Cicilline responded appropriately: "This Tweet is an open endorsement of white nationalism. Shameful."
King's tweet was too much even for the chairman of the Iowa Republican Party, Jeff Kaufmann, who said: "First of all, I do not agree with Congressman King's statement. We are a nation of immigrants, and diversity is the strength of any nation and any community."
Republicans in Washington need to join Democrats and King's own state party chair in formally condemning the congressman.
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John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, has written the Online Beat since 1999. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.
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