During a press conference held on Thursday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) censured Rep. Steve King (R-IA) for recent comments that King made suggesting many young immigrants were drug mules with calves the size of cantaloupes.
This is the strongest condemnation that the highest ranked Republican member has offered over King’s comments. Boehner said, “There’s no place in this debate for hateful or ignorant comments from elected officials…[the comments are] deeply offensive and wrong. What he said does not represent the values of the American people or the Republican party… they make it harder to get anything done.”
Even though Boehner derided King’s comments, he did not provide comment over King’s fate on the House Judiciary Committee, a committee that is entrenched in drafting the House version of immigration reform bill. When asked whether he would remove King, Boehner ambiguously responded, “I think I’ve made myself very clear when it comes to Mr. King.”
The Des Moines Register reported that Rep. King sent a campaign email on Thursday afternoon asking people to judge “whether I came anywhere close to saying, ‘most undocumented immigrants are drug smugglers.’” His email also asked people to make monetary contributions to “help fend off these attacks” against people who are trying to “take away my voice.”