WASHINGTON — Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King lost his committee seats after Republican Party Leadership met Monday night and decided King’s comments regarding white supremacy were too offensive to not move against him. (RELATED: Steve King Wants To Know How ‘White Supremacist’ Became Offensive)
King lost seats on the Agricultural, Judiciary, and the Small Business Committee.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy spoke with King earlier on Monday amid Democrats calling for his censure and removal from the committees on which he serves and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell saying King should search for “another line of work.” (RELATED: Iowa State Senator To Challenge Steve King In Republican Primary)
“Steve’s remarks are beneath the dignity of the Party of Lincoln and the United States of America. His comments call into question whether he will treat all Americans equally, without regard for race and ethnicity. House Republicans are clear: We are all in this together, as fellow citizens equal before God and the law. As Congressman King’s fellow citizens, let us hope and pray earnestly that this action will lead to greater reflection and ultimately change on his part,” Leader McCarthy said in a statement on Monday
King found himself in a whirlwind of criticism following an interview with The New York Times when he said last Thursday, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?”
South Carolina Republican Sen. Tim Scott, condemned the comments, saying in a Washington Post column, “Some in our party wonder why Republicans are constantly accused of racism — it is because of our silence when things like this are said.”
King defended his reported remarks late Monday night in a statement he tweeted out, saying the comments were “mischaracterized” and taken out of context.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters that censure resolutions against King put forth by Democratic members will be considered this week.
“As I said, the members are, obviously, and the minority — the minority leadership — Mr. McCarthy and Mr. Scalise — they’ve both spoken out strongly expressing our concern about white nationalism, white supremacy or any other imprimatur to hate and prejudice which should not be part of our country,” Hoyer said.
A vote on a censure resolution against King that disapproves of his remarks, proposed by House Majority Whip James Clyburn, is expected on Tuesday.
Former New York Democratic Rep. Charlie Rangel was the last member of Congress to receive a censure in December of 2010 following an ethics violation.