Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
August 30, 2014

Steve King: I Was Right and I Won’t Apologize

king 052 100413 445x312 Steve King: I Was Right and I Wont Apologize

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Steve King not only isn’t sorry about his controversial comments about illegal immigrants, he’s taking credit for correcting other lawmakers’ statements.

In a recent interview with his local newspaper, the Spencer Daily Reporter, King deflected all criticism waged against him and stuck by his attempts to thwart efforts by House leaders on both sides of the aisle to move forward with an overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws.

“I’m not going to apologize. What I’ve said is objectively true, and any time that Republicans have criticized me, it’s not because of what I said, it’s because they disagree with my agenda,” said King, whose interview was broadcast Thursday by the liberal blog Right Wing Watch.

He was responding to a reporter’s question about what King might say to fellow Republicans who are “upset with what they term the ‘harsh rhetoric’ of the strong right.”

King got considerable flak for comments he made this past summer about the immigrants brought to the United States illegally by their parents, the “DREAMers.”

“For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds — and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they’re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert,” King told the conservative website Newsmax in July.

King alluded to that episode in his Daily Reporter interview, saying that the statement actually played a role in shaping the immigration rhetoric of the left.

“I’ve laid out, and sometimes I’ve made the point for years, and they weren’t listening,” King explained, “so I found another way to get them to pay attention. So for example, [Senate Majority Whip] Dick Durbin, as far as I know, no longer describes the dreamers as valedictorians. We’ve corrected that major flaw and sometimes we have to, otherwise it distorts the public’s understanding.”

He also likened pressure from his peers to soften his tone with a confrontation with a constituent during his days as an Iowa state senator:

“They cannot make a point about anything I’ve said that was anything other than true … I just remember when I was in a debate at Iowa State University back when I was in the State Senate, and it was about same-sex marriage. And one of the people … went to the microphone and he said, ‘why don’t you just be progressive and get with it like Holland?’ … And I said, ‘you’re asking me to emulate Holland? Why would I emulate Holland? … They have euthanasia and abortion and legalized drugs and prostitution,’ and when I said that he gasped into the microphone and I said, ‘what’s the matter? It’s true, isn’t it?’ And he kind of whimpered, ‘you didn’t have to say it that way.’

“Is it really true that we’re to this point in society that now if you disagree with someone, you don’t have the argument … you have to instead call names and criticize the utilization of the language?”

  • electricjack

    He is 100% right the left is out to quell anything they don’t love…Its like we are no longer allowed to have a different idea than there destruction manifesto….

    • Wynstone

      What do you mean “no longer allowed”? I’m sick of conservatives acting like the persecuted when obviously they can still say whatever they want, but criticism from the left is “robbing them of freedom of speech”. Quit being cry babies and defend the substance of your arguments instead of deflecting by switching topics to attacks from the left.

      • electricjack

        Understand the difference between your beliefs and ours. For instance I will use guns as a example. If a conservative dislikes guns he she just don’t buy them.

        If a liberal dislikes guns he tries his her best to outlaw guns by getting laws passed. Even thou the US Constitution forbids outlawing guns….plus you must demonize everything we believe in……just look at your 3 fools Pelosi-Schummer-Durban…..

        • Wynstone

          Your reply is basically a non sequitur.

          I’m a liberal, but I don’t advocate for a total ban of guns so your generalization is factually incorrect and your attempt at reading the liberal mind is pathetic.

          Demonization is the main tool of conservatives. Just look at all the horrible conspiracy theories they endorse about President Obama. Many still refuse to accept the elections are not rigged.

          Where is the documentary evidence of thousands of Mexicans with backpacks stuffed with marijuana and canteloupe calves?

          • John Denton

            ‘Collectivism’ which is now being pushed by the Left and the Right takes away the freedoms of choice for the Individual for the bettermint of the ‘whole’. What if the ‘whole’ is rotted and corrupt?

          • Wynstone

            So far, I think the United States has struck a good balance between collectivism and Randian libertarianism. What that has to do with this thread, I don’t know.

          • ggm281

            Sorry,but demonizing is a tool used by cheerleaders on both sides at this point in time.

          • Layla

            Easy to tell you are a liberal. You can’t type 10 words without insulting people and bragging about your superiority to the rest of the world.

          • Wynstone

            There isn’t a single comment here or anywhere that I have claimed to be superior to others.

          • Layla

            Really? What does this look like?

            Not an excuse, just reality. I know conservatives don’t like reality.
            They’d rather believe the Earth is 6000 years old and the righteous will
            all be raptured before the global warming (if it isn’t a hoax) has any
            negative impact.

          • Wynstone

            There isn’t a single phrase in there where I say anything about being superior. If you think it implies that, that is your skewed thought process. It implies I disagree with those views, but the rest is your subjective opinion.

          • Layla

            Skewed thought process? You can’t help yourself.

          • tifosies

            Layla, you know that comments like “get a job” and “just a thought”….don’t strain yourself” are insults, right?

          • Layla

            Yep.

          • 1mrt1

            Are you a Moderator?

          • Richard Murray

            It does not take a lot of work to find the evidence. It is out there but you have to be ready to believe it is true.

            I live along the border on one of the largest and busiest smuggling corridors in the states. I have documented these stories for many years. The mainstream press refuses to publish the stories and the very few papers who do are investigated and shut down.

            Many illegals are forced to carry drugs across the border to help pay the coyotes for bringing them into the country. Smugglers set up armed encampments inside our country in places they can watch the Border Patrol and other LEO’s and direct smuggling traffic. They dig tunnels under our borders. They shoot across the border and set wildfires to distract law enforcement so the smugglers have a better chance to get through other places.

            I cannot even really begin to detail everything in this forum, but it is all happening and I see it myself.

          • Wynstone

            I’m not refusing to believe drug smuggling occurs. I’ve seen reports on tunnel operations. I’m refusing to believe Steve King when he says 99% of illegal immigrants are human pack-mules part of these operations.

            If you have documented illegal activity that authorities are ignoring, why not publish your findings on the web?

            What makes me question you is your claim that papers are “investigated and shut down”. That’s a violation of constitutional rights that other press would report.

        • Wynstone

          If a conservative dislikes gay marriage, they don’t simply refuse to attend them, they do their best to outlaw them.

          • John Denton

            Then tell me, why is me being ‘straight’ cause for sexual discrimination in the Area of Oregon? I’ve lost jobs and money because I don’t buy Kneepads.

          • Wynstone

            This is not the appropriate forum to address your personal problems.

          • Layla

            Really? You’re on here, insulting the hell out of anyone and everyone, bragging about your sad views on this country. I believe the subject was immigration and Steve King. Perhaps you need to move to Facebook.

          • Wynstone

            Look at you, replying to everybody like a troll. Shut up.

          • Raylusk

            Oh bull. I’m straight and live in Oregon and the discrimination you describe isn’t here. If you have lost jobs it’s not because you are straight it’s probably because you are doing something wrong.

          • charleo1

            Quit applying for stripper jobs in Gay bars, or get in there with the best of ‘em, knee pads and all.

          • Mark

            I think your problem is that we gay people *do* have standards when it comes to the people with whom we’re intimate.

            It seems the problem is that you’re quite a bit below those standards. That’s not our fault.

          • Layla

            Really? Ever heard of aids? Your standards may need some readjustment.

          • imwithstuoopid

            How soon they forget……

          • Mark

            Why, no, Layla: what is “aids” [sic]?

            Please tell me all about “aids” — from your direct experience with it, of course.

        • Raylusk

          No liberals don’t want to outlaw guns. For example the last proposal in the Senate was to make sure everyone that bought a gun got a background check. It wasn’t about outlawing guns. But the gun nuts when crazy and killed it.

          • Layla

            Anybody who disagrees with you, right?

          • Raylusk

            No anybody who disagrees with facts. You are about pure ideology. I’m about facts. Something you might want to become acquainted with.

        • Scott Curtis

          You didn’t even spell Durbin correctly. The Christian Right is a shrinking population in the United States. Enjoy your fleeting moments, ‘ol Jack.

        • Mark

          I should have said: I’m a gay, leftie Episcopalian in a committed, 24-year same-sex relationship, who owns a gun.

          Do you know why I own a gun? To protect myself against right-wing extremists who have decided that I shouldn’t exist because I’m a gay, leftie Episcopalian in a committed, 24-year same-sex relationship.

          • Layla

            I think you need to stop practicing to be a writer and get back to work.

          • Mark

            Oh, I’m sorry, Layla: I forgot you had the “talking stick” and no one is allowed to post until you give the stick to them.

      • Layla

        Good. We’re sick of you as well, as your insults. Get a job.

        • Mark

          Well, Layla: if you’re a “moderator” (as you claim to be), why not just delete all the comments you don’t like and leave all the comments you agree with?

          Wouldn’t that be ‘fair and balanced” in the best tradition of FOX News?

    • Trixie55

      Good for Steve King, I’m glad he stuck to what he said unlike some spineless politicians who try and back pedal. No Amnesty, No Dreamers!!

      • prado4587

        End Nobama’s shortage of visas so more people can come here legally!

    • Mark

      I’m a leftie. Worse yet, I’m a gay, leftie Episcopalian in a committed, 24-year relationship.

      Would you like my home address so you can mail some anthrax spores to me?

  • ComradeAnon

    Perhaps he could come up with one example of a “DREAMer” that got arrested working as a mule?

  • regdunlop1

    A little racism…a lot of stereotyping…and a whole lot of stupidity…I guess that sells in Iowa…what a putz…

  • DaMav

    I’m not a big fan of King on some things but on Amnesty for Illegal Aliens he is right on target. Which is why the liberals at Politico can’t stand him.

    • NepotismIsDomesticTerrorism

      “Which is why the liberals at Politico can’t stand him.”

      Umm, you’re not reading Politico, son. This is Roll Call.

  • Tom Smith

    Steve King is voicing the concerns of millions of Americans.

    • tifosies

      Fortunately, still too few to win a national election.

    • Art Bagnall

      Insane, racist Americans, yeah.

  • PaminIndy

    I do not think that illegal immigrants should be able to get citizenship. They are criminals. The children are a different story. But how do we punish and/or deport the children’s parents, what happens to the kids when their parent is deported? I can not think of any way to do this…..so we should just deport them all, and allow the kids to come back into the US LEGALLY, when they are old enough.

    In 1986 our government legalized millions of illegals. We the people, were promised that this would never happen again. The government was supposed to secure our borders and ENFORCE THE ;LAWS OF OUR NATION. Obviously this did not happen. So now the government wants to do it again???????? I SAY NO!

    • NepotismIsDomesticTerrorism

      Maybe you want to kill those kids’ parents and convert the kids to Christianity and obedience to the deregulated free market?

      Just a thought…

      • PaminIndy

        Seriously? I never said anything about killing anyone. Where is your mind? I am a Christian, but I also respect each person’s preference of religion. And there is really nothing free about the free market, there must be regulation. I will never understand why people think it is correct to reward criminals with citizenship, when they BREAK THE LAWS OF OUR COUNTRY. All countries have immigration laws. Try going into some countries and you will be shot immediately, while others will imprison you for years, just for breaking their laws. The US would never want to be that cruel, but why should we allow just anybody to enter our country illegally? DO YOU REALLY THINK THAT ANYONE WHO WANTS TO, SHOULD BE ABLE TO WALK ON IN? Any country can only sustain so many people….geeez

        • NepotismIsDomesticTerrorism

          It was just a thought.

          Besides, Ann Coulter and Too Many Fools for Sister Sarah have been pitchin’ that kill-and-convert shtick for years regarding anyone who dares to disagree with Conservative Christians.

          Muslims. Homosexuals. Liberals. Obamas. Financial regulators. The EPA. Google it for yourself.

          If Coulter and Too Many Fools for Sister Sarah Don’t Like ‘Em, it’s kill-and-convert meme time.

          • Mark

            Well, it’s not like Muslims, homosexuals, liberals, the Obamas, financial regulators or those who work in the government are really people.

            They’re an entity — like The Borg.

            /snarkasm

          • NepotismIsDomesticTerrorism

            “They’re an entity — like The Borg.”

            They’re a Swedish tennis player who owned Wimbledon in the 1980s until John McEnroe came along?

            Somebody’d better beam you up, Scotty. Your shorts are riding too high in your crotch and cutting off the natural flow of blood and oxygen to your brain. And, son, you need every drop of the red stuff and every ounce of the O2 that you can sit on.

          • Mark

            Thank you for sharing your opinion with us, Mr. “Anyone tell the boy he’s livin’ in KIN-tucky – where just about
            everybody’s married to their first cousin, stepsister, or prize billy
            goat.”

            I’m sure we all have been enlightened now that you have shared your expert opinion with us.

          • Layla

            “just a thought”….don’t strain yourself.

        • Wynstone

          If you were born in a place where your children would be malnourished and uneducated and possibly murdered by a drug cartel, you might decide crossing the imaginary line to give them a better life is a crime you can live with too.

          • Layla

            Not an excuse, sorry.

          • Wynstone

            Not an excuse, just reality. I know conservatives don’t like reality. They’d rather believe the Earth is 6000 years old and the righteous will all be raptured before the global warming (if it isn’t a hoax) has any negative impact.

          • Layla

            The reality I understand is that we are a law abiding nation, or does that bother you as well?

          • Wynstone

            We incarcerate more of our own citizens than any other country so your assertion “we are a law abiding nation” seems to be false on its face.

          • Layla

            I think we need to put troops on our borders.

          • Wynstone

            I think employing illegals should be harshly punished if we want to get rid of the incentive for illegal immigration. If we didn’t hire them, they wouldn’t come.

            But that would punish white people so good luck ever passing that.

          • Layla

            We need to enforce the laws we have on the books, shut down the border and THEN and ONLY THEN take a look at legalization.

          • Layla

            It’s not a matter of punishment. The laws are not being enforced. Your response is correct. Enforce the laws and they’ll stop coming.

            That would punish the people who write checks to Congress, like the US Chamber and we can’t have that!

          • Layla

            Then you change the laws, you don’t ignore them or selectively choose which you will enforce.

          • Wynstone

            Law enforcement makes selective decisions everyday because of the necessity to prioritize in the face of limited resources. There’s that pesky reality again!

          • Layla

            Invading a country is a bit larger than “pesky” don’t you think?

          • Wynstone

            “Invading”? This isn’t a conquering horde. They pick our lettuce, for God’s sake!

          • tifosies

            Well said.

          • mabramso

            Having a better life is a far cry from being granted citizenship. If they want to be citizens, do it the legal way. Period.

          • Jedoba

            Yeah, I mean, it’s easy for the poor to come up with the tens of thousands of dollars that is required for “legal citizenship”. The truth of the matter is that you would cross that border (illegally) or any other that separated your family from a decent opportunity of success. Either that, or you’re a loser.

          • mabramso

            Sure, I would do it in a heartbeat, illegal or not, and I have no problem with anyone who does. But who said earning citizenship was easy? Every decision that a person makes has consequences, and in this case, the price for not following the law is no citizenship — until one complies with the law that grants it.

      • conservativechick

        Most people for Mexico are Catholic already, just so you know…

        • Mark

          As opposed to being “Christians”, the way most Americans are.

          /snarkasm

        • NepotismIsDomesticTerrorism

          CC,

          Don’t think Ann Coulter and Too Many Fools for Sister Sarah are Catholic. Both are Born Agins (sic) and think Pope Francis is some kind of anti-American Commie.

          • conservativechick

            snnnnzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…….

  • Thomas Aquinas

    The more centralized control, the more the forces of liberty that enabled prosperity in the first place are extinguished.

  • conservativechick

    All it takes is a few good men and women with a spine to start changing the direction.

  • Andre Leonard

    The Dream Act and rewarding lawbreakers is wrong. Too bad his fellow lawmakers cannot grasp that. It’s an incredible concept to fathom.

  • tifosies

    King sounds like a great 2016 candidate for president. Let’s put all the Republican candidates on record for their positions on immigration reform, and let the general election begin.

    • Layla

      Get the Dems on record, too. We’re cleaning House and Senate in November. Don’t want to miss anybody!

      • tifosies

        The Dems are on record. Passed immigration bill 68/32 last year.

        • 1mrt1

          Porkulus

          • tifosies

            You’re famous for commenting with no knowledge of what you’re talking about.
            btw, no response to my comment to your foul posts? go figure.

          • 1mrt1

            When was I foul????? not me baby

    • 1mrt1

      Satire from a lib

      • tifosies

        Entirely serious, on all three points.

        I’d invest in JiffyPop before the Repub primaries.

        • 1mrt1

          Rinos mean nothing to me

          Jeb will win

  • electricjack

    Enjoy your Obamacare foolish Liberals. He destroyed the finest health care system in the entire world for what ? POWER a fool an our money are soon parted enjoy we will take the senate back and then Impeach this criminal…

    • Wynstone

      Just because our healthcare is the most expensive doesn’t mean it’s the finest system in the world. What measure are you looking at to back that statement? Infant mortality rates? Life expectancy? What? I doubt there is any statistic available that will prove the American healthcare system is the best. We have good doctors, but millions can’t afford to see them even with ACA. The “for profit” healthcare model is pushing doctors into high-paying specialties and causing a shortage of general practitioners to staff clinics in rural areas so millions are left with only getting care from physician assistants and nurses. This leaves many complex medical problems undiagnosed until it is too late. That isn’t the finest system in the world.

  • nativejms

    Democrats need to apologize for not enforcing the law!

  • 1mrt1

    Steve Rocks…..

  • DrGeneNelson

    I appreciate that Rep. Steve King understands that the U.S. is a nation of laws, not a nation where laws are selectively enforced, as many in the Obama administration seem to advocate. I’m glad for Steve’s courage.

  • skip1

    I love republicans! Thank you so much for the never ending circus and entertainment. Bravo!

  • Borderhawk

    Steve King is being tricky with what he said to annoy people. He did not refer to the regular Knucklehead Dreamers who are the bulk of them. You have 10,000 Dreamers. 9900 are knucklehead youth. 1 is a Valedictorian and 99 are criminal offenders. King was talking about the best and worst dreamers. For every 10,000 Dreamers there are 9900 Knuckleheads, 99 criminals and 1 valedictorian. Michelle Obama is on to something.

  • sidjames

    King is wrong, you can’t just go around telling the truth even if it’s true. People have feelings!

Sign In

Forgot password?

Or

Subscribe

Receive daily coverage of the people, politics and personality of Capitol Hill.

Subscription | Free Trial

Logging you in. One moment, please...