March 14, 2017


The GOP Is America's Party of White Nationalism : The Republican party's racists were once pushed to the fringes. In the Trump era, they're in charge. (MAX BOOT, MARCH 14, 2017, Foreign Policy)

The list of King's asinine, bigoted, and offensive words and acts is too long to recount. But here's the thing. It's not really possible anymore to dismiss him "as a fringe player in legitimate policy debates," as the New York Times notes that many Republicans would like to do. That may have been true at one time, in the days when the Republican Party was defined by Reagan. But those days are long past. Today it's Donald Trump's party, and there is not much breathing room between King and Trump when it comes to white nationalism.Today it's Donald Trump's party, and there is not much breathing room between King and Trump when it comes to white nationalism. Indeed, after initially supporting Ted Cruz in last year's primaries, King has become an avid Trump supporter.

The echoes between the two men -- the Iowa contractor-turned-congressman and the New York real estate magnate-turned-president -- are uncanny and disturbing. As Amber Phillips of the Washington Post pointed out last year:

In 2013, King said most immigrants were "drug mules." In his presidential campaign launch, Trump made his infamous claim that Mexican immigrants were "bringing drugs, they're bringing crime. They're rapists."

King said in 2010 that racial profiling is an important law enforcement tool. Trump endorsed broad racial profiling after the Orlando, Florida, attack, calling it "common sense."

In 2008, King questioned how a president with the middle name Hussein would play in the war on terror. After Orlando, Trump questioned the president's commitment to fighting terrorists by seemingly suggesting his loyalties could be compromised.

The ideological links between King and Stephen Bannon, Trump's chief strategist, are even closer. In a 2015 Breitbart radio interview, Bannon lauded King as "a great mentor to all of us and a great friend of the site, and a true warrior." [...]

The Bannons and Kings appear intent, with Trump's help, on undoing much of that progress toward a more inclusive society. They are pursuing a vision they share with foreign far-right leaders such as Wilders and Marine Le Pen. They want to turn the Republican Party into a "blood and soil" nationalist party and the United States into a white-supremacist stronghold.

Sadly, their worldview has become so mainstream that, while a few Republicans are willing to decorously disagree with King ("I'd like to think he misspoke and it wasn't really meant the way it sounds," House Speaker Paul Ryan said), none is willing to champion a motion to censure him or even expel him from the House Republican caucus. 

Posted by at March 14, 2017 5:30 PM