Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, said Wednesday that he has raised a respectable amount of money since he began fundraising last week off of his widely condemned comments on immigration — though he refused to cite specific figures.
“It hasn’t hurt us,” King told the Washington Examiner, “but Joe Wilson did better.”
Wilson, R-S.C., shouted, “You lie!” to President Obama during his 2009 State of the Union address and, despite criticism, raised roughly $2.7 million from supporters.
When King said in an interview with Newsmax that most illegal immigrants are drug mules with “calves the size of cantloupes,” the controversy was initially slower to build than it was with Wilson. But King has fueled it by repeatedly defending his remarks, including in a speech on the House floor. Meanwhile, House leaders have refuted King’s remarks.
In an email to supporters, King urged donations so that he could fight back against such critics.
“Without my own war chest, I won’t be able to defend myself and set the record straight with Iowans,” the email read.
Democrats have also condemned King’s remarks even while publicizing them. The liberal outside group American Bridge posted a web video of King’s remarks to mock them, but King later posted that video on his own campaign website in an effort to raise even more money.