First on CNN: Iowa's Steve King heading to South Carolina
August 6th, 2013
03:30 PM ET
12 months ago

First on CNN: Iowa's Steve King heading to South Carolina

Washington (CNN) – Iowa Rep. Steve King, whose hard line immigration rhetoric has angered some of his fellow Republicans and delighted Democrats eager to keep Hispanic voters in their fold, is quietly planning meetings with political activists in the early presidential primary state of South Carolina, CNN has learned.

King will travel to the state in late August to attend the Charleston Meeting, a closed-door gathering of right-leaning politicians and business leaders organized by author and activist Mallory Factor, two Republican sources said.

The Charleston Meeting and its sibling, the New York Meeting, are semi-regular events hosted by Factor that bring together influential conservative figures from around the country - not necessarily the local activists who will be key players in the state's primary, the first southern contest in the 2016 presidential nomination fight.

But King has also set up an invitation-only coffee in Charleston with a small group of area GOP leaders, according to Lin Bennett, a vice chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party.

Bennett, the former leader of the Charleston County GOP, has brokered similar meetings in the past for ambitious politicians hoping to make inroads into the state's conservative movement.

"When they call and ask me to do that, my thought is maybe they are thinking about a presidential run," Bennett told CNN.

Bennett described the meeting, set for Aug. 26, as an introductory session with about 20 activists - "just an opportunity for some people to talk to him."

"He is very conservative, and I think the conservative activists will like him," she said. "But they don't know him."

Aides to King did not respond to requests for comment about the trip.

If King is curious about seeking the Republican nomination in 2016, as his visit to South Carolina suggests, he would certainly face difficult odds, since no sitting member of the House has been elected president since James Garfield in 1880.

King, though, would have a national platform to discuss his policy ideas and might appeal to elements of the Republican base that remain firmly opposed to the immigration reform bill – "amnesty," in his words - that recently passed the Senate.

He would also add a wrinkle to the Iowa caucuses, given that he represents a conservative and heavily evangelical district in northwest Iowa that figures prominently in the leadoff nominating contest.


Filed under: South Carolina • Steve King
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    Can we send a drone overhead?

    August 6, 2013 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  2. Dumbas[R]ocks

    More good news for the [D]s. Keep it coming [R] clown car, keep it coming.

    August 6, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  3. Wake up People!

    Is every white male with an R after his name running for POTUS in 2016??

    The clown car filleth up......

    August 6, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Yes, and apparently, the menu will be a cold cantaloupe soup followed by roast terror baby. Steve King is a racist of the highest order and should be drummed out of Congress. PERIOD.

    August 6, 2013 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  5. Bill

    Looks like the GOP circus of clowns is taking shape for 2016. Great stuff.

    August 6, 2013 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  6. kirk

    How many fools fit in that clown car anyway?

    August 6, 2013 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  7. I'm NOT a liberal

    We have Al Qaeda on the run (a year ago). OPPS? Obama's "mission accomplished" moment obviouisly now.

    August 6, 2013 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  8. kirk

    You can't swing a dead fetus around without hitting a gop candidate

    August 6, 2013 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  9. Name jk. Sfl. GOP conservatives,the garbage of America.

    Why would any state let this GOP bigot come to their state to promote himself, this loser needs to be kicked out of office in his next election so his home state can redeem itself in front of our nation. GOP out in 2014 midterms and move forward instead of back to the GOP horse and buggy agenda!!!!!!!

    August 6, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  10. kirk

    Only the most extreme will do. The gop dance off should be very entertaining come next year.can hardly wait.

    August 6, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  11. Lynda/Minnesota

    I certainly hope CNN isn't going to try and fool folks into believing that King is a 2016 contender by following him around the country while he gives his hate speeches. Seriously.

    August 6, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  12. joe

    i asked my grandfather right before he died if there was anything i could do for him. he pulled me close and whispered " don't ever vote for a damm republican, my grandfather was a wise man and as i got older it became clear to me the wisdom in his words.

    August 6, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  13. kirk

    I still don't understand where all the hate comes from.your wealthy healthy and gat paid well til you die.what do they have to be angry about? They prey on hate and divide. I sincerely hope they lose all power until they can work for the people .simply out of control. This country will fall to revolution if things don't change.Romans had this problem right before they vanished for eternity

    August 6, 2013 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    Name jk. wrote:

    Why would any state let this GOP bigot come to their state to promote himself, this loser needs to be kicked out of office in his next election so his home state can redeem itself in front of our nation.
    -------------
    Why would they invite him? Obviously, he has the right stuff. The hyper-right wing makes a good argument for extremism. It seems to work. A moderate McCain lost in 2008. An energized extreme element won in 2010. A moderate Mitt lost in 2012. The hyper-right makes a good "I told you so" argument. King has the right stuff for the hyper-right.

    August 6, 2013 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  15. I'm NOT a liberal

    The hateful liberal racists here are parasitic at best.

    August 6, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  16. Bob

    It's obvious by how many "clown car" comments have been made that a very high percentage of you get your "news" from The Daily Show

    August 6, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    "The hateful liberal racists here are parasitic at best."

    Note to racists: Pointing out that you do and say racist things is not "reverse racism."

    August 6, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  18. ladyjag

    ANOTHER stupid Repub.lets hope women donot vote him, they need to understand the hate of Repub toward women. I looked them up, believe we do not want these idiots in office, fire them.

    August 6, 2013 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  19. The Real Tom Paine

    -I'm NOT a liberal

    The hateful liberal racists here are parasitic at best.
    **************
    Way to persuade people to your point of view. Of course, a conservative screaming about liberals being racist, hateful and parasistic is a textbook example of projection.

    August 6, 2013 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  20. I'm NOT a liberal

    The Real Tom Paine

    -I'm NOT a liberal

    The hateful liberal racists here are parasitic at best.
    **************
    Way to persuade people to your point of view. Of course, a conservative screaming about liberals being racist, hateful and parasistic is a textbook example of projection.
    -----
    And liberals scream racist all the time when they have no point which is usually.

    August 6, 2013 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  21. I'm NOT a liberal

    Sniffit – Things is? Really? Ha ha ha!!!!! You're laughable at best.

    August 6, 2013 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  22. Data Driven

    I reckon King will just try to dodge Univision if he chooses to run in the GOP presidential primary. Memo to GOPher presidential hopefuls: Univision covers USA presidential elections with great thoroughness. King's task will be to avoid questions about "canteloupe calves".

    August 6, 2013 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  23. g

    KING of the republicans

    August 6, 2013 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  24. I'm NOT a liberal

    The Real Tom Paine

    -I'm NOT a liberal

    The hateful liberal racists here are parasitic at best.
    **************
    Way to persuade people to your point of view. Of course, a conservative screaming about liberals being racist, hateful and parasistic is a textbook example of projection.
    --

    It's actually the truth. You libs call it what you want. You always do.

    August 6, 2013 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  25. A True Conservative

    Keep buying votes Dems....don't worry about the next generation....just the next election!

    August 6, 2013 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
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