Steve King: If Iowa Caucus Were Today, Trump Would Win

On Thursday’s broadcast of CNN’s “New Day,” Rep. Steve King (R-IA) discussed Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump and his strength as a candidate in the early going of the 2016 primary contest.

King attributed Trump’s success to his tough tack on illegal immigration, which he said resonated with the American people.

“Well, I’d say today he is a legitimate entity. And there is something that I see that mirrors some of the path that I’ve followed. You know, I’ve stepped up and said things that were objective and delicate and truthful,” King said. “And nobody listened. Then I doubled down on that to the point they did listened. Then they tried to marginalize me, but I was speaking objective truth and fact. Donald Trump did the same thing. And in the attempt to marginalize him has pushed him to the top of the polls. So, right now he is legitimate and right now he is a player. And I would say this – if the caucus took place in Iowa today, I believe Donald Trump would come out on top.”

King went on to add the tragic death of Kate Steinle has prolonged the effectiveness of Trump’s message.

“I think this — sometimes you’ve got to grab the American people and shake them a little bit and say, ‘You’re not paying attention,’” he added. “They pay attention when Donald Trump speaks. That was June 16 when he made that statement and it was a week before the news got a hold of it. And I think it might have died down if it hadn’t been for the tragic shooting in San Francisco with Kate Steinle. That has added fuel to the fire and it’s brought the focus of the entire nation on this. And Chris, I’m glad we’re looking at this now and people are starting to quantify the tragedies in America that are taking place.”

Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor