Equality Matters

Rep. Steve King Proudly Recalls Confronting "Screaming, Profane Gays"

February 14, 2011 11:40 am ET - by Kate Conway & Julia Krieger

Controversy over gay conservative group GOProud's attendance at this year's Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) led a number of socially conservative organizations to boycott the conference — but not staunchly anti-gay Rep. Steve King (R-IA).

When asked about his attendance at CPAC, King was all too happy to defend his anti-gay credentials, describing how he bravely faced down the "screaming, profane gays" that met him at "nearly every stop" when he participated in an anti-marriage-equality bus tour. "They were so intimidating and so threatening and so profane," he recalled.

KING: Well let me just do a little bit of history. I was one of the authors of Iowa's Defense of Marriage Act when I was in the state Senate. The language of that is language that I drafted. So that foundation is there.

And I've been a co-sponsor, original co-sponsor of a constitutional amendment to establish marriage between a man and a woman. When the seven Iowa Supreme Court justices ruled and imposed by judicial fiat same-sex marriage in Iowa, I opposed the three of them that came up on retention ballot.

I went on the judge bus tour with the National Organization for Marriage and the Family Research Council, and I climbed off of that bus into the heart of the screaming, profane gays that met us at nearly every stop, and I took them on directly, and in some cases actually — not direct violence, but physical. Yeah, so, and then, I went back down and sat down in the radio studio —

POLITICAL CORRECTION: You were physically — they, like, physically tried to —

KING: Well here's the extent of it. They get right in your face and they scream profanities right at you. And you have to stand there and deliver it. I finally, as my voice gave out, I turned it over to Connie Mackie who is a verbal pugilist of the first order, and they even crowded tight around her, so I turned my back to them and just, I backed up into them. I kept bulldozing them away from Connie Mackie because they were so intimidating and so threatening and so profane.


Perhaps the people meeting Rep. King's bus were so upset because his efforts to keep gay Iowans from having the same marital rights as straight ones go above and beyond even average homophobia. He has equated gay marriage with socialism and even suggested that 'losing marriage' and allowing gay couples to raise children is akin to raising them in "warehouses." At CPAC, King described how he went so far as to use his own campaign and PAC money to buy political ads against the judges who voted to uphold same-sex marriage in Iowa.

"I went to the radio studio and sat down and wrote a commercial against the judges ... and I pulled money out of my PAC and money out of my campaign, I took money out of my own campaign ads and ran 'em against those judges and we beat all three of them," he said. "So. Just in case anybody wonders what I think about marriage."

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