Iowa Rep. Steve King took President Obama to task Saturday, blaming him for the conditions that caused civil unrest in Baltimore and Ferguson.
“President Obama has consistently driven wedges between people. And he perceives a difference on race, maybe on ethnicity, well yes on ethnicity, sexual orientation—wedge after wedge after wedge. I didn’t really imagine they were going to drive a wedge between the law and law-breakers,” King told reporters at the South Carolina Freedom Summit in Greenville.
King cited the example of Obama’s “Beer Summit” early in his first term with Cambridge, Mass., police Sgt. James Crowley and Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
No riots were caused by Obama’s intervention in the Cambridge dispute, but King said the seeds were being planted.
“That was instinctive on the part of the president in my view,” King said. “He concluded that the cop was wrong and the professor was right and he made it a national issue.”
He also mentioned the president weighting in on the shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman in Florida and telling Hispanics that they could be harassed because of Arizona’s anti-illegal immigration law.
“All of those things drive wedges between people. We don’t need that and we surely don’t need it when it comes to law enforcement,” he said. “That’s a level that I have not seen before.”
A reporter asked King if Obama was directly responsible for the riots in Baltimore and he responded “I’ll say ‘yes,” he said. “The culture has created that because they drove that culture in Ferguson and it multiplied itself in Baltimore and then across the country.”
“If we had a different president, one who could look into the television camera and say ‘Listen, God created all of us,’ and we cannot discriminate against people based upon the distinction that he’s given each of us,” he said.
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