Rep. Steve King removed from House committees after racist remarks


Republican Steve King represents Iowa’s 4th District in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Kara Gravert

A “no room for white supremacy” attitude led House leaders to remove Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King from his committees Monday in response to remarks made last Thursday by the nine-term congressman.

“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” King said in an interview published with the Times last Thursday.

Reports said the Republican Steering Committee unanimously decided to remove King from the judiciary, agriculture and small business committees upon House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy’s recommendations.

“Leader McCarthy’s decision to remove me from committees is a political decision that ignores the truth,” King said in a statement he made following his removal.

McCarthy’s office said the House Republican Steering Committee agreed to not seat King on any House committees in the 116th Congress.

House Democrats announced a plan Monday to introduce a censure resolution on King’s remarks. Censure resolutions are formal, public condemnations of an individual’s actions or remarks — seen as the last step before expulsion. The resolution currently holds 14 of King’s statements going back to 2006.

King released a statement on Twitter Monday surrounding McCathy’s decision to remove him from committees, stating the quotes used in the New York Times story were “mischaracterized” and an “unprecedented assault” on his freedom of speech. 

“When I used the word ‘that’ it was in reference only to Western Civilization and not to any previously stated evil ideology all of which I have denounced,” King said. “My record as a vocal advocate for Western Civilization is nearly as full as my record in defense of Freedom of Speech.”

The House voted 424 to 1 on Tuesday for a resolution titled “Rejecting White nationalism and White supremacy” which King voted in favor of, according to USA Today.

The only vote against the resolution was from Democratic Rep. Bobby Rush, who said the resolution did not go far enough in condemning King. 

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with King’s statement and the House resolution on Jan. 15, 2019.