GOP congressman won't say if he thinks a white society is superior to a nonwhite society
Congressman Steve King speaking at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, DC. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) seems keenly aware that his longtime personal style of espousing open white supremacy is starting to wreck his political career.

Perhaps for that reason, at a recent town hall event, King tried a slightly different tack as The New York Times reported:

“Do you think a white society is superior to a nonwhite society?” Mary Lavelle, 63, asked, testing his reputation for white supremacist sympathies.

“I don’t have an answer for that. That’s so hypothetical,” Mr. King, Republican of Iowa, told her. “I’ll say this, America is not a white society — it has never been a completely white society. We came here and joined the Native Americans.”

He continued: “I’ve long said that a baby can be lifted out of a cradle anywhere in the world and brought into any home in America, whatever the color of the folks in that household, and they can be raised to be American as any other. And I believe that every one of us, every one of us, is created in God’s image.”

Leaving aside the ridiculousness of King’s claim that we “joined the Native Americans” when in fact the colonists and their descendants conducted a brutal genocide against them, King has not “long said” that a baby from anywhere in the world could be raised American. In fact, he famously said the exact opposite in 2017, warning that “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”

For years, King was given total impunity by his Republican colleagues to engage in appalling racism, from claiming that most young Mexicans are drug mules to giving an interview to a Nazi-founded Austrian group during a Holocaust education trip. The last straw, however, was an interview with The New York Times in January, in which he demanded to know when “white nationalist” and “white supremacist” became offensive terms. Finally recognizing King was a political liability, Republicans condemned him and stripped him of his House committee assignments.

Now, it seems, King is trying to reinvent his public image. But if his answer on “white societies” is representative of his efforts, it won’t end well for him.