Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Buffoon Watch: Steve King's Greatest Hits


He can't be for real, can he? Alas, all too real.

by Noah

There are two Steve Kings of at least some renown in our society. One is Stephen King, the world-famous writer of horror. The other is Rep. Steven King of Iowa. He is a monster for real.

Rep. Steven King has a special talent for articulating what the Republican Party stands for. That talent has led to his prominence in the party. Tim Moran, a former Iowa GOP State Central Committee member thinks King should run for senator, saying the Republican Party might find it ". . . refreshing to have Steve King at the top of a ticket to drive the message and definition of the party."


This past weekend Representative King was the cohost of the so-called Iowa Freedom Summit, aka Buffoon-o-Rama 2015, designed to kick off the 2016 Republican presidential primary season. Most of the usual suspects were there, including "The Donald" and his hair Sarah Palin with her special talent for speaking complete gibberish,  and neo-fascist Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Mittens Romney and John Ellis "Jeb" Bush chose not to attend, presumably to try to convince us that they are not as buffoonish as the other participants.

But King was in his self-proclaimed glory, acting as a combination ten-ring master of ceremonies and smarmy game show host. He even made sure to have his name emblazoned on the front of the podium as if it was the seal of the president of the United States. If you read the following selections from King's ever-expanding list of greatest hits, you will see that when it comes to heading up a confab of buffoons, Representative Steve is at the top of his class and a perfect choice. The following is just a small, but I think representative, sample of Steven King's Greatest Hits. There is so much more, and no doubt there will be so much more to come.


Do you like dogfighting and cockfighting? If you are of the Michael Vick persuasion and enjoy throwing animals in a pit and watching the blood squirt, Representative King is your man! He has led the fights in Congress to block legislation that would crack down on such barbarism. During discussions of the 2012 farm bill, it was King who led the fight against an amendment that would make it a crime for an adult to attend or to bring a child to a dogfight or cockfight. In 2007 he had opposed House bill H.R.137, which made it a felony to transport animals or cockfighting implements across state lines for the purpose of fighting.

King is one of the few lawmakers of either party who opposed including pets in disaster planning. He also voted against the 111th Congress's H.R.80, a bill written to prohibit interstate and foreign commerce in primates for the pet trade.

There's a whole lot more where this type of thing came from, but you get the picture. Basically, if something protects an animal somewhere, Representative King is against it, even more so than some members of his own party.


In 2003, Sioux City (Iowa) Judge Jeffrey Neary granted two lesbians a divorce. King's response was:
Unicorns, leprechauns, gay marriages in Iowa; these are all things you will never find because they just don't exist. But perhaps Judge Neary would grant divorces to unicorns and leprechauns too.
Same-sex marriage became legal in Iowa six years later, in 2009. Like his party, Representative King is a man of no vision.


King is clearly his party's leader on anti-immigration matters. One of his most famous statements about immigration -- and there are many of them -- is what is known as "the cantaloupe comment." Referring to immigrant children coming across our borders, he said:
For every one 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 has also compared Mexican immigrants, documented and undocumented alike, to dogs:
You want a good bird dog? You want one that's going to be aggressive? [P]ick the one that's the friskiest . . . not the one that's over there sleeping in the corner. . .&nbsp. You get the pick of the litter.
We already know about what Representative King thinks of dogs. I suspect such a man would like to set up "Mexican fighting pits" that would be just like cockfights and dogfights. Maybe they'll have that at the 2016 Republican Convention and Hatefest.


King has called climate change " more of a religion than a science."  He has repeatedly demonstrated his contempt for science and his complete lack of understanding of the issue. He is not even smarter than a fifth grader. Perhaps his arrogance about the subject is best pointed out by this quote: "I spent a lot of my life cold. It felt pretty good to get warmed up."


King is a key player in the Republican anti-contraception movement. He has made a lot of noise objecting to the idea that Obamacare could cover birth control for women as a free preventive service without a copay. Says he:
Well, if you applied that preventative medicine universally, what you end up with is you've prevented a generation. Preventing babies from being born is not medicine. That's not constructive to our culture and our civilization. If we let our birth rate get down below replacement rate, we're a dying civilization.

This statement is a classic example of an extremist using extremist thinking. Dying civilization? Hardly. As it is now, the U.S. population is 312 million people, and it's on course to reach 439 million by 2050. To turn that pace into a dying civilization would require a staggering amount of contraception use, an amount way, way beyond what the Obamacare provision would realistically lead to.

As far as I'm concerned, the best solution to the population problem, at least in this country, would be for Republicans to immediately stop procreating. It would solve a lot of other problems too!


As I indicated, the above barely scratches the surface of Representative King and what a perfect one-person embodiment of the Republican Party philosophy he is. You can click on the DWT "Steve King" label below for some of our favorites. Then here are a couple of suggestions for further reading:

• "Steve King: Gays Wouldn't Face Discrimination If They Didn't 'Wear Their Sexuality On Their Sleeve'" (HuffPost Politics, December 2010)

and especially:

• "Right-Wing Demands Obama Fire Kevin Jennings for Helping Gay Teens Not Kill Themselves" (Julie Farby, HuffPost Politics, March 2010, updated May 2011)

SCHEDULE NOTE: Next post at 7pm PT/10pm ET

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At 6:04 PM, Blogger joel hanes said...

People who know King well tell me that he's not, in fact, stupid -- that he knows full well that his statements are full of lies and outrageous calumnies, and that he does it on purpose.

It's a political act that sells well in his district, and in other rural parts of the nation where suspicion and resentment of "others" runs deep.

Personally, I think that's morally worse than if he were genuinely stupid.

At 1:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Joel has a point re: saying such drivel on purpose. In NC my state rep tried to legislate a state religion. While she was booed down, in her own district, it actually resonated. How awful is that?


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