Steve King fundraising off controversy surrounding white supremacy comments

Steve King fundraising off controversy surrounding white supremacy comments
© Greg Nash

Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingIowa Steak Fry to draw record crowds for Democrats Ocasio-Cortez rips Steve King after he shares video drinking from toilet-fountain hybrid at border Steve King says he drank from toilet at detention center MORE (R-Iowa) sent a fundraising email to supporters asking for help in defending him from The New York Times and the “rabid leftist media” after he questioned in an interview with the newspaper why terms such as “white supremacist” were offensive.

“The unhinged left has teamed up with Republican 'NeverTrumpers' and is pulling out all the stops to destroy me," King wrote in a campaign email obtained by the Des Moines Register on Thursday.

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King accused the Times and “rabid left media” of coming after him because of his support of President TrumpDonald John TrumpNYT publisher: US didn't step in to protect reporter from arrest in Egypt so paper turned to Ireland Trump instructed administration to withhold military aid for Ukraine days before call with president: report More Democrats threaten impeachment over Trump's dealings with Ukraine MORE and his hard-line views on immigration.

The fundraising attempt comes after King received fierce backlash following an interview with the Times in which he questioned how terms such as "white nationalist" and "white supremacist" became offensive in the U.S.

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

King later said that he made a “freshman mistake” agreeing to the interview and claimed his quote was taken out of context.

"I regret the heartburn that has poured forth upon this Congress and this country and especially in my state and in my congressional district," King said in a House floor speech condemning white supremacy.

"I've never been anti-immigrant. I have been anti-illegal immigrant, and I remain that way," King said.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyClarence Thomas, Joe Manchin, Rudy Giuliani among guests at second state visit under Trump Hillicon Valley: Lawmakers say Zuckerberg to 'cooperate' on antitrust probes | Dems see victory after McConnell backs election security funds | Twitter takes down fake pro-Saudi accounts Lawmakers say Zuckerberg has agreed to 'cooperate' with antitrust probe MORE (R-Calif.) later removed King from all of his committee assignments following the backlash.

The Des Moines Register and the largest newspaper in King's Iowa district have both called on the nine-term lawmaker to resign.