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 KingFeenstra wins Iowa House race to fill Steve King's seat Democrats lead in 3 of 4 Iowa House races: poll Hillicon Valley: House votes to condemn QAnon | Americans worried about foreign election interference | DHS confirms request to tap protester phones 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 PelosiGovernors take heat for violating their own coronavirus restrictions Spending deal clears obstacle in shutdown fight Ocasio-Cortez, Cruz trade jabs over COVID-19 relief: People 'going hungry as you tweet from' vacation MORE (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyTop Republicans praise Trump's Flynn pardon Richmond says GOP 'reluctant to stand up and tell the emperor he wears no clothes' Sunday shows preview: Biden transition, COVID-19 spike in spotlight MORE (R-Calif.).


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 RushHillicon Valley: Judge's ruling creates fresh hurdle for TikTok | House passes bills to secure energy sector against cyberattacks | Biden campaign urges Facebook to remove Trump posts spreading 'falsehoods' House passes bills to secure energy sector against cyberattacks Congress should investigate OAS actions in Bolivia MORE (D-Ill.) and Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanHouse Democrats introduce bill to invest 0 billion in STEM research and education Now's the time to make 'Social Emotional Learning' a national priority Mourners gather outside Supreme Court after passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg 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."