Congressman Steve King’s legislative profile has now diminished to the point of needing to be defended by online celebrities at his own Capitol press conference.
Outside the U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday afternoon in Washington, D.C., the Iowa Republican was joined by Lynnette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, known by their online platform “Diamond and Silk,” to introduce the “Diamond and Silk Act.”
Also known as the “End Sanctuaries and Help Our American Homeless and Veterans Act,” the bill redirects federal funding from “sanctuary cities” and “sanctuary states” to programs providing assistance for America’s homeless and veterans, according to a press release issued by King’s office.
It is “the product of a discussion on immigration policy King held with Diamond and Silk earlier this year,” the statement said.
Unlike some of King’s other public appearances, the press conference was not live-streamed, but a few reporters at the press conference provided updates on Twitter.
According to reporters Alex Thomas and Jared Holt, Diamond and Silk came to the “defense” of King when he was asked about racist remarks he has made in the past, and why he should be taken seriously as a congressman after being stripped of his committee assignments by Republican leadership.
“This ain’t about no Steve King,” said Hardaway, at the press conference. “This is about our homeless, our veterans and Americans.”
When news came Monday about King’s legislation with the YouTube personalities, a conservative columnist for the Washington Examiner made his disgust known, according to a Roll Call article.
In the opinion piece, Becket Adams called King’s legislative partnership with the women “idiotic and cruel to whom the legislation is intended to serve.”
King has become a conservative favorite of the two Fox News contributors, landing an invitation as his guest at the State of the Union this year.
In an interview with King posted Tuesday to Diamond and Silk’s Facebook page, the congressman defended himself against those who have labeled him a racist based on his history of controversial statements, including the “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” comment to the New York Times that led to the loss of his committees.
“First, we’re all created in God’s image,” King said. “And the second is, human life is sacred in all of its forms. When you get to those two pieces, if you believe that as profoundly as I do, then there’s no room for racism.”
by Elizabeth Meyer