Donald Trump’s sudden rise to power as America’s orange oligarch has left the country floundering in a sea of chaos, but it has also had a ripple effect. It has lowered the bar for all other politicians and made it easier simply to be bad at what they do. With such an inept and vile leader taking the nation’s reins, it is difficult to imagine a more despicable character representing our government.
That representative showed up on Wednesday in the form of Steve King (R-Iowa). King represents the 4th Congressional District in his home state and made waves yesterday by saying he would take money from the needy to build Donald Trump’s border wall.
With Trump toiling to dismantle 240 years of progress, demean women, insult America’s intelligence, community, and make racial attacks, it takes a bit of effort to outdo his villainy. King must have given his statement on Wednesday considerable attention to determine how to out-evil Trump. Suggesting lawmakers take money from food stamp recipients and Planned Parenthood catapulted King to Trump status.
King, whose net worth is estimated at $400,000 has been a politician for over 20 years, despite failing to finish college as so many of his constituents are trying to do in order to find jobs and stay off public assistance. In his comfortable education-not-needed position as a member of congress, King earns a base salary of $174,000, which is nearly four times the median income in the Iowa district he represents. Like Trump and his family, King also characterizes — albeit at much lower levels — the growing attitude of entitlement among entrenched Washington representatives.
On Tuesday, the House Appropriations Committee introduced a bill to allocate $1.6 billion to building Trump’s border wall. During an interview, King voiced his support of the spending measure with the caveat that he would prefer to add $5 billion more in funding…and he would begin by taking $500 million from Planned Parenthood and the rest from federal welfare programs like food stamps.
King justified his callous budgetary manipulations by suggesting that food stamps foster obesity and that a border wall would create millions of jobs. Maybe King should have stayed in college to study geography and economics. In case he had not noticed, Iowa has no border with Mexico and King himself is only a recent convert to Trump and his wall building since 18 months ago he was endorsing Ted Cruz for president.
In King’s Iowa district, 13.9% of families with children live below the poverty level. That means a family of four is trying to survive on less than $24,000 per year in a state with a $7.25 per hour minimum wage. Two adults working full- and part-time at minimum wage cannot earn enough to feed themselves and two children. The same family probably has no health coverage and relies on Planned Parenthood for at least basic reproductive care and other services.
Under King’s proposed budget reallocations, he would strip a family like that of their food stamps…because he believes they are too fat and too lazy to find jobs. He would deny them access to family planning, which could lead to another mouth to feed with no money. With such astute cognitive reasoning skills, it is no wonder that King never finished college — it seems like the three years he spent as a student were wasted on Alpha Kappa Lambda parties.
Beating the Trump drum is King’s last gasp to remain relevant in the sunset of his 20 years as a less-than mediocre member of congress. To King, and any other politician who believes his own personal entitlement allows him to cast hardship and suffering on America’s struggling families we say, “If you want a wall so badly, here’s a shovel.” That $174,000 America saves on your salary will feed plenty of Iowa’s hungry children.