Anti-Defamation League calls on House leaders to censure Steve King over white supremacy comments

Anti-Defamation League calls on House leaders to censure Steve King over white supremacy comments
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The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on Monday called for the House to censure Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingYoung Turks reporter tricks Steve King into tweeting about 'A Few Good Men' villain Holocaust survivor who offered to tour Auschwitz with Ocasio-Cortez calls for her to 'be removed from Congress' Liz Cheney hits back at Ocasio-Cortez over concentration camp comments: 'This isn't model Congress' MORE (R-Iowa) and strip him of his ranking membership over his history of making anti-Semitic and offensive statements. 

"I write to raise up a request that you come together to censure Rep. King and strip from him his ranking membership," ADL CEO and national director Jonathan Greenblatt wrote in a public letter to Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDHS chief to Pelosi: Emergency border funding 'has already had an impact' The Hill's Morning Report: Trump walks back from 'send her back' chants Trump faces new hit on deficit MORE (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyThe Hill's Morning Report: Trump walks back from 'send her back' chants History in the House: Congress weathers unprecedented week EU official in Canada says he feels 'at home' there because no one was shouting 'send him back' MORE (R-Calif.).

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Greenblatt notes in the letter that he made a similar request in October after King defended his association with a far-right Austrian group with links to the Nazi party and hard-line views on immigration. 

"Rep. King doubled down on this behavior by questioning why the terms white supremacist and white nationalist are offensive," Greenblatt wrote. "His protestations after the fact that he is not bigoted do not align with years and years of statements and actions on the part of the Congressman."

The letter goes on to include reasons why white nationalism and white supremacy are problematic. It also takes issue with some of King's past associations, including his support of a white nationalist Toronto mayoral candidate. 

"We strongly urge you to demonstrate your revulsion with Rep. King’s actions by working together to censure him and strip him of his subcommittee ranking membership and otherwise discipline him," Greenblatt concludes. "By doing so, you will make clear that his actions were deeply offensive, wrong, and that the U.S. House of Representatives will not tolerate anti-Semitism or bigotry in any form."

The letter comes days after King questioned why terms such as "white supremacist" and "white nationalist" were offensive in an interview with The New York Times. 

Democratic and Republican lawmakers quickly denounced the statement, with McCarthy saying on Sunday that "action will be taken."

Two House Democrats, Rep. Bobby RushBobby Lee RushCongress mobilizes on cyber threats to electric grid CBC lawmakers rip Justice Democrats for targeting black lawmakers for primaries The Hill's Morning Report - Harris, Warren rise and Biden tumbles after debates MORE (D-Ill.) and Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) John RyanThe Hill's Campaign Report: Stage set for second Democratic showdown Biden, Harris set for second Democratic debate showdown 2020 Democrats react to 'send her back' chants at Trump rally MORE (D-Ohio) introduced resolutions on Monday to censure King. 

King has faced scrutiny over his comments on subjects such as immigration in the past. He once tweeted that diversity is not America's strength

King has sought to defend himself in light of the backlash, saying in a statement last week that he rejected the "white supremacist" and "white nationalist" labels "and the evil ideology that they define."

He said that he considers himself "simply a nationalist."