Like moths to a flame, liberal media outlets are all over the latest development in a Rep. Steve King (R-IA) controversy, even though the “news” is that King defended himself with virtually identical language to what he has used in the past.
In an interview with Spencer, Iowa’s Daily Reporter published Feb. 19, King defended comments he made last summer that while some illegal aliens youths – the so-called DREAMer class – are valedictorians, others are involved in smuggling illegal drugs across the border.
“For everyone who’s a valedictorian, there’s another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds–and they’ve got calves the size of cantaloupes because they’re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert,” King said then, adding, “Those people would be legalized with the same act.”
In his new interview, King said his original remarks were true.
“I’m not going to apologize,” King said yet again. “What I’ve said is objectively true, and any time that Republicans have criticized me, it’s not because of what I said, it’s because they disagree with my agenda.”
The story was picked up by the Huffington Post, Salon, Right Wing Watch, Talking Points Memo, Roll Call and Real Clear Politics despite that his remarks weren’t substantively different from what he’s said in the past.
In the Daily Reporter interview, King said “When they start calling names, they’ve lost the debate.”
In a July interview with Breitbart News in which he defended his comments, King said “You know when people attack you–in this business, when you’re in this business, you know that when people attack you, and they call you names, they’re diverting from the topic matter. You know they’ve lost the debate when they do that.”
When King made his remarks in the summer, amnesty proponents seized on the comments as an opportunity to try to paint King as unfair to immigrants.
After the comments, GOP leadership officials, ranging from House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) to Majority Leader Eric Cantor joined with Democrats like White House Press Secretary Jay Carney to attack King for making that comment despite abundant evidence that some illegal alien youths are, in fact, engaged in drug smuggling.
Boehner even told a Democratic Congressman, Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), that King was an “asshole” for making the remarks, which Castro wrote about in a later magazine article.