Rep. Steve King (R-IA), who infamously said that white people have contributed more to civilization than any other “subgroup,” slammed the Congressional Black Caucus as “self-segregating” in a radio interview Thursday.
In a press conference last week, the Congressional Black Caucus said they deemed Donald Trump a racist following an event where Trump aimed to put an end to his reputation as the birther movement’s arguably biggest proponent. Trump falsely pinned the conspiracy theory on his opponent Hillary Clinton and claimed to have “finished” the movement aimed at proving President Barack Obama was not born in the United States by pushing him to release a long-form birth certificate.
King questioned the caucus’ authority on the subject, telling local Iowa radio station KVFD that it is “moving away” from integration.
“And now we’ve got the Congressional Black Caucus here in Washington, DC, today will be leading a protest and they have declared Donald Trump to be a racist. Now, why are they the authority on that?” King said in the interview, which was flagged by BuzzFeed News. “I call them the self-segregating caucus, and so, they long ago moved away from the integration that we really need in this country.”
King and the KVFD host began to discuss their “rejection” of the terms “bigot” and “racist,” with King bringing up controversial comments he made during the Republican National Convention in July, when he challenged the other participants on an MSNBC panel to name a “subgroup” that contributed more to civilization than white people.
The congressman said that later he was approached by a journalist who was on the panel, April Ryan. He told her that she was “devaluing” the word “racist” by saying it and asked her if the “melanin in her skin” gave her the right to do so.
“She approached me at the Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame a day or two later, with her tape recorder — it was one of those things you call a media ambush — and so, she began to call me a racist,” he said. “And I said, ‘use that word again, again, again, say it a million times. You’re devaluating the effect of it. You’ve got no basis of it because you’ve got more melanin in your skin does that give you the right to call me a racist?’”
Listen to the segment below via BuzzFeed News: