Cory Booker is raising money for the Democrat challenging Rep. Steve King in Iowa.
Booker’s fundraising appeal for J.D. Scholten comes on the heels of the latest King controversy: he told a conservative group that rape and incest was the cause of civilization.
“What if we went back through all the family trees and just pulled those people out that were products of rape and incest?,” the Des Moines Register reported him as saying on Wednesday. “Would there be any population of the world left if we did that?”
King made his statement in defense of a ban on abortion that does not include a rape or incest exception.
“Considering all the wars and all the rapes and pillages taken place and whatever happened to culture after society? I know I can’t certify that I’m not a part of a product of that,” King said.
Scholten came within three points of ousting King in 2018.
“It’s deeply disturbing that a sitting member of Congress with a track record of saying such abhorrent things still managed to get re-elected every two years for over a decade,” Booker said. “But, this time will be different.”
Booker campaigned with Scholten during his last congressional run.
“While we rode around Iowa in his Winnebago, the Sioux City Sue, it became clear that J.D. is a man of high moral character with a deep belief in public service,” Booker said. “The people of Iowa — and our country — deserve better.”
House Republicans stripped King of his committee assignments in January after suggested that being called a white supremacist should be considered derogatory.
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming), the House Republican Conference Chair, called King’s comments “appalling and bizarre.”
“As I’ve said before, it’s time for him to go,” Cheney said on Twitter today. “The people of Iowa’s 4th congressional district deserve better.”
A nine-term congressman, King faces several opponents in the Republican primary, including State Sen. Randy Feenstra.
King was once a political ally of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
When Christie was called to testify before a House Judiciary subcommittee looking at deferred prosecution agreements in 2009, former Attorney General John Ashcroft put Christie in touch with King. King helped prepare Christie for the hearings.
Christie helped raise money for King in 2012 and 2014.
“I will be a supporter of Steve King for as long as he continues to be in public life,” Christie told the Star-Ledger. “I consider him a friend.”
For a while in 2013, Christie believed he might compete in the 2016 Iowa Caucuses with the endorsement of King and then-Gov. Terry Branstad.
Neither wound up supporting him.
Hours after leaving office in January, Christie took to Twitter to criticize King, saying his comments were “reprehensible and should be repugnant to any American.”
“It is unacceptable to me and to anyone, I suspect, who has lent him support over his career,” Christie said. “Shame on him.”