House Dem renews call for censuring Steve King

A senior member of the Congressional Black Caucus renewed his call Friday to censure 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) over recent comments he rebuked as additional evidence of racism.

In a letter to Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiRomney: Trump asking Ukraine to investigate political rival 'would be troubling in the extreme' Pelosi: Whistleblower complaint 'must be addressed immediately' Democrats must embrace Israel and denounce anti-Semitism in the party MORE (D-Calif.), Rep. Bobby RushBobby Lee RushHouse Democrats blur lines on support for impeachment Congress mobilizes on cyber threats to electric grid CBC lawmakers rip Justice Democrats for targeting black lawmakers for primaries MORE (D-Ill.) cited instances in the past week of that included King criticizing victims of Hurricane Katrina, demurring when asked if a "white society" is "superior" and musing over another civil war between red states with "8 trillion bullets" and blue states.

The House adopted a resolution in January condemning white supremacy after King said in a New York Times interview, "White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?"

House GOP leaders stripped King of his committee assignments following those comments — which came after years of the Iowa Republican making inflammatory remarks about race and immigration.

Rush, as well as Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) John RyanThe Hill's Campaign Report: De Blasio drops out | Warren gains support from black voters | Sanders retools campaign team | Warning signs for Tillis in NC Williamson: Climate change result of an 'amoral' economic system Overnight Energy: Top presidential candidates to skip second climate forum | Group sues for info on 'attempts to politicize' NOAA | Trump allows use of oil reserve after Saudi attacks MORE (D-Ohio), introduced measures to censure King at the time, but Democratic leaders did not want go that far.

Rush argued Friday that King deserves censuring because he continues to stoke controversy.

"We have repeatedly spoken out and condemned bigotry and racism on the House floor. Nevertheless, [King] has defiantly continued and amplified his behavior. With that in mind, I cannot fathom a way in which we can allow Rep. King’s ongoing and repeated comments to go unpunished," Rush wrote in the letter to Pelosi.

"He is a virulent racist who has repeatedly insulted the American people — and minorities specifically — with his hatred," Rush wrote.

Rush voted against the resolution condemning white supremacy in January because he favored a tougher response to King. The resolution referenced King's comments to The New York Times, but didn't directly rebuke him.

At the time, Rush said he would reserve the right to force a vote on his censure resolution if King made more racist remarks.

"If Steve King utters one more type of racist commentary, then I reserve the right to bring it up out of the Ethics Committee," Rush told reporters in January.

King has said his comments to The New York Times were taken out of context.

When asked in an interview with Iowa Public Television’s “Iowa Press” program if he's "sorry for anything that you've said," King replied: “I have nothing to apologize for."

King's latest comments about Hurricane Katrina victims drew rebukes from both parties.

During a town hall this week, King described how Iowans helped one another compared to victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

“Here’s what FEMA tells me: We go to a place like New Orleans and everybody’s looking around saying ‘who’s gonna help me?' ” King said.

King said that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) told him that an Iowan, would say “wait a minute, let me get my boots, it’s Joe that needs help. Let’s go down to his place and help him.”

"They’re just always gratified when they come and see how Iowans take care of each other,” he added.

House Minority Whip Steve ScaliseStephen (Steve) Joseph ScaliseScalise blasts Democratic legislation on gun reforms Liz Cheney calls for 'proportional military response' against Iran On The Money: Senate panel scraps vote on key spending bill amid standoff | Democrats threaten to vote against defense bill over wall funding | Trump set to meet with aides about reducing capital gains taxes MORE (R-La.) told The Advocate that King's comments were "absurd and offensive."

“His comments about Katrina victims are absurd and offensive, and are a complete contradiction to the strength and resilience the people of New Orleans demonstrated to the entire nation in the wake of the total devastation they experienced,” Scalise said.

Rep. Cedric RichmondCedric Levon RichmondTwo former Congressional Black Caucus chairmen back Biden Election security funds caught in crosshairs of spending debate Lawmakers weigh responses to rash of ransomware attacks MORE (D-La.), a former Congressional Black Caucus chairman who represents New Orleans, blasted King as a "white supremacist."

"My heart goes out to all Iowans. Though it unsettles me that @SteveKingIA would dare compare them to the countless victims of Katrina, many of whom lost their lives. When people show you who they are, believe them. Steve King is a white supremacist and I won’t stand for it," Richmond tweeted.