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House passes resolution condemning white nationalism

The House overwhelmingly passed a resolution on Tuesday condemning white nationalism and white supremacy in the wake of public remarks by Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingPence to visit Iowa to headline event for congressman Former Steve King challenger on rural voters in GOP states: 'They hate Democrats' First Democrat announces Senate bid against Iowa's Grassley MORE (R-Iowa) questioning why the terms are considered offensive.

The resolution, approved in a 424-1 vote, doesn’t directly rebuke King.

Instead, the text states that the House “once again rejects White nationalism and White supremacy as hateful expressions of intolerance that are contradictory to the values that define the people of the United States.”

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Some Democrats want to go much further and argued the measure offered by House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.), a senior member of the Congressional Black Caucus, was too soft. Reps. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanJ.D. Vance emerges as wild card in Ohio GOP Senate primary 9 Senate seats most likely to flip in 2022 Biden faces dilemma on Trump steel tariffs MORE (D-Ohio) and Bobby RushBobby Lee RushGranholm expresses openness to pipeline cyber standards after Colonial attack Feds eye more oversight of pipelines after Colonial attack Shining a light on COINTELPRO's dangerous legacy MORE (D-Ill.) have both introduced resolutions to censure King for his remarks.

Rush voted against Clyburn’s resolution, which was tailored to draw bipartisan support. In a statement, Rush said that “while I strongly condemn white supremacy and white nationalism, my position remains unchanged. Anything short of censure is shallow.”

Clyburn told reporters after the vote that he opted for a resolution that didn't go as far to accommodate some lawmakers who weren't comfortable with censuring King.

"It doesn't go far enough for me," Clyburn acknowledged, adding that he would support censuring King.
 
"I try when I can not to make people uncomfortable. When I can, I try to accommodate people's feelings and positions. And we have a few people who are uncomfortable with censure, but very comfortable with disapproval," Clyburn said.

King voted in favor of the resolution, saying, "I agree with the language in it."

A growing number of Republicans are calling for King to resign, including Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyCentrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting Centrists gain leverage over progressives in Senate infrastructure battle The Hill's Morning Report - After high-stakes Biden-Putin summit, what now? MORE (Utah), Rep. Chris StewartChris StewartStudents sue Atlanta police after being shocked with a stun gun, pulled from car EPA administrator: We don't plan to return 'verbatim' to Obama-era water regulation On management of Utah public lands, Biden should pursue an accountable legislative process MORE (Utah) and House GOP Conference Chairwoman Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyCheney: 'It is disgusting and despicable' to see Gosar 'lie' about Jan. 6 GOP's Stefanik defends Trump DOJ secret subpoenas McCarthy pushes back on Biden criticism of GOP at NATO MORE (Wyo.).

Cheney said at a press conference earlier Tuesday that “I think he should find another line of work,” echoing a statement from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP increasingly balks at calling Jan. 6 an insurrection Black lawmakers warn against complacency after Juneteenth victory Graham quips key to working with Trump: We both 'like him' MORE (R-Ky.) a day earlier.

The third-ranking House Republican went further than House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyGOP increasingly balks at calling Jan. 6 an insurrection House Democrats' campaign arm raises almost million in May Five takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision MORE (R-Calif.), who said it’s up to King’s constituents to keep him in the House.

King, who has a long history of courting controversy on race, has maintained that his comments to The New York Times were taken out of context.

“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive? Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?” King said in the interview published last week.

The vote came a day after House GOP leaders announced they would not assign King to any committees for the new Congress. King had served on the Judiciary, Agriculture and Small Business committees. He had even served as a chairman of a Judiciary subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice and could have served as its ranking member under the Democratic majority.

King has denied that he supports white nationalism or supremacy.

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

GOP leaders previously haven’t punished King for making controversial remarks.

King in 2013 said in an interview with Newsmax that for every undocumented immigrant who becomes a valedictorian, “there's another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds and they've got calves the size of cantaloupes because they're hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert.” Then-Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerAre maskless House members scofflaws? Israel, Democrats and the problem of the Middle East Joe Crowley to register as lobbyist for recording artists MORE (R-Ohio) called King's comments “deeply offensive and wrong.”

In 2017, King created another firestorm when he said that “we can’t rebuild our civilization with somebody else’s babies” while tweeting in support of an anti-Muslim nationalist Dutch politician.

Then-Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanNow we know why Biden was afraid of a joint presser with Putin Zaid Jilani: Paul Ryan worried about culture war distracting from issues 'that really concern him' The Memo: Marjorie Taylor Greene exposes GOP establishment's lack of power MORE (R-Wis.) told Fox News at the time that “I disagree with that statement.”

But no action was taken against King, who claimed to The Hill following pushback from a handful of fellow GOP lawmakers that “my colleagues have generally been coming by and patting me on the back.”

King also drew condemnation last year from the then-chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, Rep. Steve StiversSteven (Steve) Ernst StiversNew Mexico Democrat Stansbury sworn into Haaland's old seat Retired GOP representative: I won't miss the circus, but I might miss some of the clowns The Hill's Morning Report - Census winners and losers; House GOP huddles MORE (R-Ohio), after supporting a white nationalist candidate for Toronto mayor and telling an Austrian publication, “What does this diversity bring that we don’t already have?”

President TrumpDonald TrumpHead of firms that pushed 'Italygate' theory falsely claimed VA mansion was her home: report Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting VA moving to cover gender affirmation surgery through department health care MORE has not criticized King’s more recent remarks, and told reporters on Monday that he hadn’t been closely following the issue.

-Updated 4:44 p.m.