Iowa Rep. Steve King (R)’s 2013 remarks accusing immigration activists of being drug mules weren’t just embarrassing and offensive to liberals and Democrats. According to Talking Points Memo, even Speaker of the House Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) called the congressman an “a**hole.”
Last July, King told the right-wing blog Newsmax that he was against passage of the DREAM Act, which would allow a path to citizenship for undocumented Americans who were brought to this country as children.
“Some of them are valedictorians — and their parents brought them in,” King told Newsmax. “It wasn’t their fault. It’s true in some cases, but they aren’t all valedictorians. They weren’t all brought in by their parents. For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s another 100 out there that weigh 130 pounds and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they’re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert.”
The bizarre remarks set off a firestorm of controversy. King was publicly scolded by Republican leadership, but freshman Rep. Joaquín Castro (D-TX) wrote in Texas Monthly Friday that Speaker Boehner’s scorn for the notoriously anti-immigration Iowa congressman overflowed in private as well.
On a day not too long after Boehner’s political body check of Steve King for his immigration comments, the speaker was milling around the aisle walkway in the middle section of the House floor where the Democratic and Republican territories meet. Another Texas Democrat and I were standing a few feet away, and as the speaker passed us we thanked him for denouncing King’s offensive comments. He slowed his stride and then paused to turn toward us. “What an a**hole,” he said. My thoughts exactly, Mr. Speaker.