Iowa Senator Joni Ernst joined the rising group of Republicans who’ve condemned conservative Rep. Steve King (R-IA) for his latest feedback in help of white supremacy.

In a latest interview with the New York Occasions, King, an Iowa lawmaker who has made a number of controversial statements about race, puzzled how language like “white nationalist” and “white supremacist” grew to become racist. “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization—how did that language develop into offensive?” King was quoted saying within the report. “Why did I sit in lessons educating me concerning the deserves of our historical past and our civilization?”

Ernst condemned King’s remarks on Saturday morning and made clear his phrases didn’t characterize Iowa. “I condemn Rep. Steve King’s feedback on white supremacy; they’re offensive and racist—and never consultant of our state of Iowa,” she tweeted, alongside a Washington Put up op-ed by Tim Scott titled “Why are Republicans accused of racism? As a result of we’re silent on issues like this.”

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“We’re an important nation and this divisiveness is hurting everybody. We can not proceed down this path if we wish to proceed to be an important nation,” Ernst added.

GettyImages-1081066696 U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-IA) speaks throughout a listening to the place Google CEO Sundar Pichai testifies earlier than the Home Judiciary Committee on the Rayburn Home Workplace Constructing on December 11, 2018 in Washington, DC. On Saturday, Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst condemned King for his latest controversial feedback asking when “white nationalist” grew to become an offensive time period. Getty/Alex Wong

A number of Republicans leaders have additionally moved to denounce King’s remarks. Liz Cheney, the third-ranking GOP Home member, condemned his feedback as “abhorrent and racist,” whereas Home Minority Chief Kevin McCarthy labeled the congressman’s language as “reckless, mistaken, and has no place in our society.”

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In a Washington Put up op-ed, Senator Tim Scott, the Senate’s solely black Republican, argued that the feedback have been damaging to each the Republican occasion and the nation. “When individuals with opinions just like King’s open their mouths, they injury not solely the Republican Occasion and the conservative model but in addition our nation as an entire,” Scott wrote. “Some in our occasion marvel why Republicans are always accused of racism—it’s due to our silence when issues like this are stated.”

King, who was first elected to Congress in 2003, referred to as his feedback a “freshman mistake” throughout a speech on the Home ground on Friday. “I remorse the heartburn that has poured forth upon this Congress and this nation and particularly in my state and in my congressional district,” King stated.

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The 69-year-old congressman—a distinguished Trump ally—additionally defended his place in a statement posted to social media. “As we speak the New York Occasions is suggesting that I’m an advocate for white nationalism and white supremacy,” he tweeted. “I wish to make one factor abundantly clear; I reject these labels and the evil ideology they outline.

King added: “It’s true that just like the Founding Fathers I’m an advocate for Western Civilization’s values, and that I profoundly consider that America is the best tangible expression of those beliefs the world has ever seen. Beneath any honest political definition, I’m merely a Nationalist. As I advised the New York Occasions, ‘it’s not about race; It’s by no means been about race.’”

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