Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFormer Speaker Boehner's official portrait unveiled Key Republicans say Biden can break Washington gridlock From learning on his feet to policy director MORE (R-Ohio) called Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingWhy the GOP march of mad hatters poses a threat to our Democracy MSNBC's Donny Deutsch: 'Pathetic' Republicans who stormed closed hearing are 'boring, nerdy-looking white guys' Overnight Defense: Trump lifts sanctions on Turkey | 'Small number' of troops to remain by Syrian oil fields | Defense official's impeachment testimony delayed five hours after Republicans storm secure room MORE (R-Iowa) an “a--hole” last year shortly after King’s disparaging comments about illegal immigrants, according to a Democratic congressman. 

Rep. Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroHillicon Valley: Google to limit political ad targeting | Senators scrutinize self-driving car safety | Trump to 'look at' Apple tariff exemption | Progressive lawmakers call for surveillance reforms | House panel advances telecom bills Minority lawmakers call out Google for hiring former Trump DHS official Castro tweaks brother's beard: 'If I knew it'd look like that I wouldn't have suggested it' MORE (D-Texas) on Friday said Boehner condemned King last July when he alleged that for every young illegal immigrant who becomes a valedictorian, there are 100 with “calves the size of cantaloupes” hauling marijuana across the border.

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After King's comments, Castro, who is of Mexican descent, thanked Boehner on the House floor for publicly admonishing King. “What an a--hole,” Boehner responded, with a shot at King.

Castro said he agreed with the statement. 

Castro, a freshman congressman, disclosed Boehner’s comment in a first-hand essay published Friday in Texas Monthly about his first year in office. He complimented Boehner and shot down the Democratic caricature of Boehner as an “overly tan, overly emotional cat-herder who has lost control of his flock.”

“In person, he comes across as approachable and down-to-earth, and you can see how he earned the trust of his colleagues and became their leader,” Castro said of the Speaker. 

Castro explained King’s comments by concluding many Republicans lack “diversity in their gerrymandered congressional districts.”

“Simply put, most don’t have enough Hispanics for the issue to really matter to their reelections. A few of the less tactful Republicans seemed to even go out of their way to express disdain for immigrants,” he added.