On Tuesday, Iowa’s 4th District Congressman Steve King promoted the American white supremacist Lana Lokteff in a self-contradictory tweet apparently aimed at critics who have denounced his own racist statements. “‘Nazi’ is injected into Leftist talking points because the worn out & exhausted ‘racist’ is over used & applied to everyone who lacks melanin & who fail to virtue signal at the requisite frequency & decibels,” King tweeted. “But…Nazis were socialists & Leftists are socialists” (a false statement — Nazis were far-right fascists).
Lokteff is a YouTube personality (see the video above) and prominent member of the so-called alt-right. She’s married to Henrik Palmgren, a Swede who owns the media company Red Ice, which was founded in 2003 and shifted its focus from paranormal conspiracy theories to topics catering to white nationalists, supremacists, and anti-Semites in 2014 when the Black Lives Matter movement gained prominence. (Lokteff’s YouTube videos have titles including “‘Diversity Is a Weapon Against White People” and “Oprah #MeToo #TimesUp Movement Ignores ‘Migrant’ Gang Rapists Who Walk Free.”)
“Nazi” is injected into Leftist talking points because the worn out & exhausted “racist” is over used & applied to everyone who lacks melanin & who fail to virtue signal at the requisite frequency & decibels. But…Nazis were socialists & Leftists are socialists https://t.co/0SkC2a4Y2l
— Steve King (@SteveKingIA) September 12, 2018
It’s the second time in recent months that King has endorsed a high-profile white supremacist on Twitter. In May and again in June, he retweeted anti-immigrant messages from British neo-Nazi Mark Collett, later claiming he wasn’t aware of who Collett was while simultaneuously declining to undo the retweets and casting doubt on Collett’s well-documented extremist views.
King’s comment on Wednesday’s Lokteff retweet is also the second time he’s tweeted those exact words. The first time was on Sunday. Both times, his Democratic challenger J.D. Scholten — who is running a strong campaign and has an outside shot at winning the race — replied to King’s tweets by asking, “@SteveKingIA are you referring to your 5 trips to Austria in the last 6 years (on TAXPAYERS’ DIME!!!) to meet with the Freedom Party of Austria who [sic] was founded by a literal Nazi?” (Read more about King’s associations with the far-right Austria party here, here, and here.)
.@SteveKingIA are you referring to your 5 trips to Austria in the last 6 years (on TAXPAYERS’ DIME!!!) to meet with the Freedom Party of Austria who was founded by a literal Nazi? https://t.co/BU4akkMqkk — J.D. Scholten (@Scholten4Iowa) September 9, 2018
The Lokteff tweet King shared included a photo of three white children with the message: “According to Bono if your Swedish kids look like this, they are Nazis. No, they are adorable & everyone knows it!” It’s an apparent reference to a recent performance in Paris by the rocker of U2 fame at which he posed as an evil alter ego and gave a mocking Nazi salute to criticize the rise of the far right in Sweden.
At the Huffington Post, Christopher Mathias, a reporter covering hate and extremism who highlighted King’s tweet, summarized some of Lokteff’s other white nationalist and supremacist views. She supports the establishment of a white ethnostate, once said that the US “can never, ever be too white,” claimed that interracial relationships are “more devious than blatant in-your-face mass murdering,” and tweeted that “#SeinfeldTaughtMe why people don’t like Jews.”
Lokteff is also connected to former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, who last year tweeted that “sanity reigns supreme in Iowa’s 4th congressional district” after King praised a far-right, anti-migrant Dutch politician, saying, “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.” In 2016, Lokteff went on Duke’s podcast, thanking her fans for listening afterward in a tweet saying, “Nothing like coffee and David Duke to start your day.”
As Mathias also noted, Lokteff’s and her husband’s Red Ice TV has on multiple occasions interviewed high-profile white supremacists, including Richard Spencer.
I’ll say it again: it’s so deeply depressing & disturbing that a sitting U.S. congressman can tweet out a white supremacist’s propaganda & it’s not a national scandal & none of his colleagues are calling for him to resign. https://t.co/mITbaKEF0C
— Christopher Mathias (@letsgomathias) September 12, 2018