SIOUX CITY — A notable Republican from Sioux City has created a political action committee to direct money to defeat embattled U.S. Rep. Steve King, as he seeks re-election to the Iowa 4th congressional district in 2020.
Christopher Rants, a former 18-year legislator and House Majority Leader, on Thursday announce had founded the federal group, named Iowa Four PAC. In a release, Rants said the PAC would support a fellow Republican, state Sen. Randy Feenstra, of Hull, in the congressional contest.
Additionally on Thursday, Feenstra separately announced he had raised more than $100,000 in the first 10 days since the launch of his candidacy.
Rants said there was a necessity to form the committee, since “King has embarrassed the district and has shown he is incapable of providing Iowans representation.”
Rants added that King has been stripped of all House committee assignments and received widespread nationwide criticism, due to racist remarks.
Republican leaders voted Monday night to take away all of King’s committee assignments for the next two years. Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy cited King’s comments in a New York Times story that “call into question whether he will treat all Americans equally, without regard for race and ethnicity.”
In an interview with The New York Times for a story last week on immigration and race, King was quoted saying, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive? Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?”
In a statement Monday, King insisted the quote “has been completely mischaracterized.” The congressman said he was only wondering aloud: “How did that offensive language get injected into our political dialogue? Who does that, how does it get done, how do they get by with laying labels like this on people?”
In a rare action, the House overwhelmingly approved a Tuesday resolution designed to rebuke King for the comments.
The resolution called for the chamber to reject white nationalism and white supremacy as “hateful expressions of intolerance that are contradictory to the values that define the people of the United States.”
Feenstra’s release said the $100,000 haul shows “early financial strength” for his campaign.
“Since launching our campaign, the financial support and encouragement from conservatives across our district and the country has been overwhelming,” he said.