Republicans rebuke King for racial remarks

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Republicans are piling on Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), rebuking the GOP lawmaker for remarks that Democrats have cast as racist.
In a tweet on Sunday, King praised far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders, a fierce critic of Islam who supports curbing immigration in his home country. King remarked in his tweet that “we can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”

That tweet — and King’s subsequent defense, in which he called Western civilization “superior” and expressed a desire for Americans to look more “homogenous” — has provoked cascading anger from his Republican colleagues, including Sen. Tim Scott (S.C.) and Reps. Carlos Curbello (Fla.) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Fla.).
Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) offered his own dissent from King’s remarks. In a statement, Ryan spokeswoman AshLee Strong said that Ryan “clearly disagrees and believes America’s long history of inclusiveness is one of its great strengths.”
Democrats are also joining the pile-on, with Drew Hammill, a spokesperson for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) saying that King’s “vile racism has no place in decent society, much less in the U.S. Congress” and calling on Speaker Ryan (R-Wis.) to rebuke him.
“Once again, disgusting hatred has been met with deafening silence from Speaker Ryan,” Hammill said in a statement. “It’s no accident that communities across America have been threatened by emboldened racists. The GOP Leadership must stop accommodating this garbage, and condemn Congressman Steve King’s statements in the strongest and most unequivocal terms. Speaker Ryan and the House Republican Leadership must decide whether white supremacy is welcome in the GOP ranks.”
King is standing by his remarks.
“I meant exactly what I said,” King told CNN’s “New Day.”
King argued that the U.S. and Western European countries “need to get our birth rates up” to avoid being “entirely transformed.”
He tied his argument to illegal immigration, saying that those who come to the country illegally refuse to “assimilate into American culture.”
“Living in enclaves, refusing to assimilate into the American culture and civilization. Some embrace it, yes. But many are two and three generations living in enclaves that are pushing back now and resisting against the assimilation,” King said.
“I’d like to see an America that’s just so homogenous that we look a lot the same, from that perspective,” he added.
“This is an effort on the left, I think, to break down the American civilization, the American culture, and turn it into something entirely different,” King said Monday. “I’m a champion for Western civilization and, yes, our English language is a big part of it. It’s a carrier of freedom.”

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