Photo: IA Rep. Steve King (R)
Always the newsmaker, U.S. Rep. Steve King is at it again.
King, a Republican who represents Iowa’s Fourth District, said last week during an interview with Newsmax, “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 remarks are in relation to debate on immigration reform and the DREAM Act that pertains to illegal immigrants younger than 35, whose parents brought them into the country. They would ultimately be given a path to citizenship.
King’s office did not return requests seeking comment, but he has said in multiple statements this week he stands by his remark and is surprised that anyone would be dismayed by it.
Republican leaders, including Speaker of the House John Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, blasted King for his most recent round of explosive comments. Political pundits say the words could hurt the Republican party nationally, especially since they further illustrate the disconnect shown with voters during the 2012 election.
A leading voice on immigration for the GOP and native Puerto Rican Rep. Raul Labrador called King’s words irresponsible and reprehensible, saying they did not reflect a majority of House Republicans. Labrador, however, also criticized the media for blowing the comments out of proportion.
But it’s unlikely his off-the-wall remarks will have an effect in his home district in Northwest Iowa, given it’s solidly Republican.