Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), an outspoken supporter of tougher deportation policies whose views the campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton once called “literally white supremacy,” said something positive about her on Thursday.
Or, at least, not entirely negative ― a surprise coming from the hardline conservative.
“I’ve sat across the table with Hillary Clinton eye-to-eye, and when you’re working outside of staff and outside of the press, she is somebody I can work with,” King said as part of The Des Moines Register’s Political Soapbox series at the Iowa State Fair.
King reiterated his support for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and vice presidential pick Mike Pence after his speech, Iowa Starting Line reported. He also said he would have to think about what specific issues he could work with Clinton on.
There are many issues that seem out of the question: Clinton supports the type of immigration reform that King considers “amnesty,” along with social developments such as abortion rights and same-sex marriage that King vehemently opposes.
On Thursday, the congressman said he would “add” to Trump’s idea for a southern border wall, according to Iowa Starting Line. “First build a fence near the border. Then go up about 100 feet, build a wall. Then go another 100 feet, build another fence,” King said. “Then you have two no-man lands there that you can enforce easily within and patrol and put the sensors on there.”
Clinton and King have taken multiple public jabs at each other. The Clinton campaign sent out a fundraising email last month highlighting King’s suggestion that white people, aka Western civilization, have contributed more to the world than “any other subgroup.”
From King’s side, he recently pressed Attorney General Loretta Lynch on why Clinton was not indicted for her email setup as secretary of state. King’s remarks alluded to the vote to impeach Clinton’s husband in the late 1990s after his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.
The congressman said in 2014 that Clinton had a “screechy” voice ― like “fingernails on the chalkboard.”
But King told Breitbart News in March that establishment Republicans might support Clinton if Trump or Texas Sen. Ted Cruz became the GOP nominee because “they may decide they can do business with Hillary, and they might take their big bucks and go home.”
On that last point, he was right.