Embattled Representative Steve King (R-IA) has been dodging accusations and calls for his resignation ever since a NY Times article quoted him asking when “white supremacist” and “white nationalist” became offensive. Following punishment from the House, he is now claiming he was misquoted.
The NY Times reported admits there’s no tape of the conversation and the quote was written based on notes he took. Here’s the quote as it appeared in the article:
“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive? Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?”
King is speaking out against House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
“Kevin McCarthy knows there is no tape. He talked to the NY Times reporter who said he believed he represented it accurately, so Kevin McCarthy’s taking the word of the NY Times reporter over me,” King said.
He said it’s up to voters to decide whether or not he needs to continue to hold his seat. In recent days, he’s growing more confident that he will win next year’s election despite the controversy.
“Well, of course our phones have been busy and really intense for a long time now, a number of days,” King continued. “But it’s shifted from the early calls on the first day to now it’s overwhelmingly supportive of me.”
The quote, if accurate, is hard to overlook. But if voters are willing to take his word for it that he was misquoted, he may be able to get past this incident and continue his efforts in the House.