In January, as chair of the House Judiciary Committee, Bob Goodlatte appointed Congressman Steve King of Iowa to be chair of the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice.
As Goodlatte knew at the time, King has a history of saying stupid and racist things. But he chose to ignore that.
“His expertise on many of the issues facing our nation and the committee make him well-suited to serve as chairman of the Constitution and Civil Justice Subcommittee,” Goodlatte said in a written statement. “I look forward to working with him as we seek to safeguard Americans’ liberties and promote an efficient and just legal system.”
Now The Washington Post reports:
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) has gained notoriety for his often contentious — and, occasionally, almost overtly racist — comments about immigration and the demographics of the United States. On Sunday, in a tweet about the nationalist Dutch politician Geert Wilders, King again appears to have crossed the line.
“Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny,” King wrote. “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”
The formulation of “our” civilization being at risk from “somebody else’s babies” is a deliberate suggestion that American civilization is threatened by unnamed “others” — almost certainly a reference to non-Westerners. The idea that national identity and racial identity overlap entirely is the crux of white nationalism; King’s formulation above toes close to that line, if it doesn’t cross.
So congratulations, Congressman Goodlatte, for recognizing how “well-suited” Steve King is to head an important subcommittee that is supposed to help ensure equal justice for all Americans. Come out and take a bow.
Update: There’s more. What now, Bob?