Rep. Steve King (R-IA) once again openly expressed his white supremacist sentiments Monday when tweeting support for the campaign of Geert Wilders, a candidate for Dutch Prime Minister.
Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies. https://t.co/4nxLipafWO
— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) March 12, 2017
King’s avowed disgust of anything with more melanin than the color of milk is well-documented. King’s coddling of Europe’s radical right wing, nativist parties seems to indicate that he’s cool with foreigners, so long as they look like him. It makes sense then that the man he’s endorsing is also flagrantly anti-immigrant and particularly anti-Muslim.
Wilders, who was invited by King to address Congress in 2015, is not widely liked by his political opponents in the Netherlands. He’s a fan of American President Donald Trump and has been called the Dutch Trump, a moniker that may not play to his advantage considering the negative view of Trump in the Netherlands. He’s even got his own catchy dog-whistle answer to “Make America Great Again” with “The Netherlands, Ours Again.”
Current PM Mark Rutte said he would form a government with Wilders “under no conditions, iresspective of the outcome” of Wednesday’s election. Other top politicians seem to share Rutte’s sentiment.
Wilder’s party, the Freedom Party, has a radical anti-Muslim agenda that actively demeans Europe’s liberal democratic values (though his disdain behind Europe’s current set of values may be why he also wants to put forward a ‘Nexit’ referendum to have the Netherlands leave the European Union). “In its five-year plan for 2017–2021, the Freedom Party pledges to reverse the ‘Islamization’ of the Netherlands by implementing measures such as closing mosques and Islamic schools, securing borders, banning the Koran, closing asylum seeker centers, banning Muslim migrants and forbidding women from wearing headscarves,” Politico reported.
“Dutch values are based on Christianity, on Judaism, on humanism. Islam and freedom are not compatible,” Wilder said last month, in comments that echo past comments from his buddy in Congress.
“Muslims in the Middle East are incompatible with American democracy,” Steve King said in an interview on MSNBC in 2015.
And much like King — who “meant exactly what I said” when asked about his tweet on civilization and “somebody else’s babies” — Wilders isn’t afraid to double down on his bigotry.
“I really believe in what I say, that the Islamic ideology is this huge threat,” Wilders said.
Wilders comments are causing many Muslim citizens of the Netherlands to wonder if the country is still a place of tolerance and acceptance. His talking points have already entered the mainstream, with Rutte recently telling immigrants they must “integrate or leave.”
“[If he does the things he says] and starts closing mosques and all the other things he wants to do, then I think we’ll have reached a moment when many people like me may need to leave,” Ahmad Elbaghdadi, a 40-year-old Dutchman of Moroccan descent told USA Today.
“There’s no way I could have known all those years ago that Holland would get to a moment like this,” he said. “It’s very hard to constantly hear from a major politician that you are not a Dutch person. However, I have children here and I can’t just go. We have to hope that one person can’t just change everything.”