Steve King: Republican criticised by own party for saying 'We can't restore our civilisation with someone else's babies'

Republican U.S. Rep. Steve King of Iowa: AP
Republican U.S. Rep. Steve King of Iowa: AP

A Republican congressman has been censured by his own party and labelled "an authentic Cro-Magnon" after he claimed the US cannot "restore our civilisation with somebody else's babies".

Iowa representative Steve King retweeted a message endorsing the anti-Islamic views of Geert Wilders and added: "Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny." It was an apparent reference to children born to Muslim immigrants.

Dutch election candidate Mr Wilders, who met last year with Mr King and who travelled to Washington in 2015 at Mr King's invitation to discuss Islam, is among a number of politicians in Europe who have sparked controversy with their views on race and culture.

Mr King came under fire from his own party for the message, with Iowa Republican Party chairman Jeff Kaufmann saying: "I do not agree with Congressman King's statement. We are a nation of immigrants, and diversity is the strength of any nation and any community."

A Republican state representative in Minnesota also called him "a fake conservative, a fake Republican, but an authentic Cro-Magnon".

Venture capitalist Peter Brack told him: "You, Congressman, are simply a bigot. Good thing is, I know a lot of smart Dems eyeing your seat."

And Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of Bill and Hillary Clinton, said: "Clearly the Congressman does not view all our children as, well, our children."

A child born in the US is granted automatic citizenship under the 14th amendment to the country's constitution.

But Mr King's comment did gain approval from former Ku Klux Klan imperial wizard David Duke, who tweeted: "GOD BLESS STEVE KING!!!"

Mr King defended his views in an interview on CNN on Monday.

He said: "I'd like to see an America that's just so homogenous that we look a lot the same from that perspective. I think there's been far too much focus on race, especially in the last eight years and I want to see that put behind us.

"I did defend Western civilisation. If we have an element of Americans here, and it's a big element, that reject Western civilisation, then what have we? This is an effort on the left, I think, to break down the American civilisation, the American culture, and turn it into something entirely different."

The post Mr King had retweeted on Sunday showed an image of Mr Wilders plugging a hole in a wall labelled "Western Civilization" as protesters with beards behind him hold signs that say, "Infidels, Know Your Limits" and "Freedom of Speech Go To Hell".

Among his previous controversial statements, he claimed the US Supreme Court's 2015 decision to allow same-sex couples to marry would mean "you can marry my lawnmower".

Earlier this year he introduced a bill to the House that would impose a federal ban on carrying out abortions after six weeks of gestation.

Mr King told reporters his so-called "heartbeat bill"—because it blocks terminations once the fetal heartbeat can be detected—would amount to a near-total end to abortions because many women do not even realise they are pregnant by the six-week mark.