fb-pixel

WASHINGTON — Representative Steve King said Wednesday that humanity might not exist if not for rape and incest, prompting the latest round of outrage at the Iowa Republican, who has a long history of making inflammatory remarks.

At the Westside Conservative Club in Urbandale, Iowa, King was defending his position against laws allowing abortion exceptions in cases of rape and incest.

‘‘What if we went back through all the family trees and just pulled out anyone who was a product of rape or incest? Would there be any population of the world left if we did that?’’ King said, according to the Des Moines Register.

Advertisement



King’s comment drew rebukes from both sides of the aisle.

J.D. Scholten, a Democrat who ran against King last year and is challenging him in 2020, said King’s remarks are ‘‘disrespectful to survivors and don’t reflect Iowan values.’’

Republican Randy Feenstra, an Iowa state senator who is waging a primary challenge against King, also condemned the lawmaker’s comments.

King kicked off his bid for a 10th term in Congress in February by declining to apologize for repeatedly making offensive remarks. The previous month, House Republican leaders stripped King of his committee assignments after The New York Times published an interview in which the lawmaker questioned how the terms ‘‘white nationalism’’ and ‘‘white supremacy’’ had become offensive. After the censure, King compared himself to Jesus.

Over the years, King has claimed that ‘‘our civilization’’ can’t be restored with ‘‘somebody else’s babies,’’ supported a Toronto mayoral candidate considered to be a white nationalist, and met with a far-right Austrian group with historical Nazi ties.