Steve King: Without rape and incest, Would there be any population of the world left?

During a Wednesday speech to the Westside Conservative Club in Iowa, Rep. Steve King suggested that populations across the globe were rooted in rape, pillaging, and incest, while espousing that no baby should be aborted because of the way they were conceived.

“What if we went back through all the family trees and just pulled out anyone who was a product of rape or incest?” the Iowa congressman asked. “Would there be any population of the world left if we did that? Considering all the wars and all the rapes and pillages that happened throughout all these different nations, I know that I can’t say that I was not a part of a product of that.”

King, the father of three sons, argued that babies conceived of rape were no less valuable than those conceived intentionally. “It’s not the baby’s fault for the sin of the father, or of the mother,” he said.

A staunchly conservative member of the GOP, King has long been a controversial figure in the U.S. Congress for comments about immigration, race, religion, and abortion.

King was stripped of his House committee assignments in January after he questioned why white supremacy was a bad thing. “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” he said to the New York Times.

Shortly after the interview, several top GOP members suggested that King be censured at the very least. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested that King find “another line of work.”

King, 70, was slammed for comments made in July 2016 about the contributions made by “nonwhite” people throughout history. “This whole ‘old white people’ business does get a little tired, Charlie,” King said to writer Charles Pierce on an MSNBC appearance. “I’d ask you to go back through history and figure out where are these contributions that have been made by these other categories of people that you are talking about? Where did any other subgroup of people contribute more to civilization?”

Just days later, King received further criticism when he said, “The idea of multiculturalism, that every culture is equal — that’s not objectively true … We’ve been fed that information for the past 25 years, and we’re not going to become a greater nation if we continue to do that.”

In a 2017 endorsement of controversial Dutch politician Geert Wilders, King said, “Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”

King later doubled down on his assertion, saying that he “meant exactly what I said.” He further stated that populations and culture needed to be carefully cultivated. “You cannot rebuild your civilization with somebody else’s babies,” King said. “You’ve got to keep your birth rate up, and that you need to teach your children your values. In doing so, you can grow your population, you can strengthen your culture, and you can strengthen your way of life.”

Democratic Iowa Rep. Abby Finkenauer slammed King’s remarks as “incredibly cruel & disrespectful to survivors.”

“Steve King & his values, his rhetoric, & his disdain for decency is a far cry from the Iowa I know,” she said in a tweet. “He doesn’t represent who we are & he continues to be an embarrassment to our state & federal delegation.”

New York Sen. and Democratic presidential hopeful Kirsten Gillibrand called for King’s resignation, tweeting, “You are a disgrace. Resign.”

In a rare reference to claims that she married her brother, Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar tweeted about King’s comments, saying, “Gross! This would explain why these weirdos are fixed on smearing me with claims of incest. Projecting their filth, unreal.”