FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 21, 2019
Contact: Kaleb Harmon
Chair Karen Carter Peterson Condemns Rep. Steve King’s Comments Toward New Orleans Flood Victims
BATON ROUGE, LA – On Thursday, New Orleans native, State Senator and Chair of the Louisiana Democratic Party Karen Carter Peterson called on Rep. Scalise and the rest of the Louisiana Congressional Delegation to join her in condemning the comments made by federal representative Steve King attacking Hurricane Katrina victims.
In a town hall meeting in Iowa, Rep. King went out of his way to insult New Orleanians for the way they responded to Katrina. King claimed that FEMA officials told him “we go to a place like New Orleans and everybody’s looking around saying, who’s gonna help me, who’s gonna help me?” He used this derogatory characterization of New Orleanians to demonstrate his view that Iowans are superior. He said that unlike New Orleanians, Iowans “take care of each other.”
“I am thoroughly appalled at the comments Rep. Steve King made surrounding my city of New Orleans,” Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, Chair of the Louisiana Democratic Party said. “Hurricane Katrina devastated Louisiana leaving 1,800 dead with tens of thousands more homeless and impoverished. He has no right to comment on what our people have been through or continue to spread these falsities.”
“I strongly condemn Rep. King and the comments made and call on Rep. Steve Scalise who also represents the people of New Orleans, and his fellow members of Congress, to do the same. His dog whistle comments today are a further display of his racist, white supremacist beliefs and call on prejudiced, hate-filled stereotypes that he has no problem displaying. There is no place for this sort of hateful rhetoric in our government and we need our leaders to show that they will not tolerate it.”
King claimed that victims of Hurricane Katrina were only looking for handouts following the disaster saying “We go to a place like New Orleans and everybody’s looking around saying, who’s going to help me, who’s going to help me?”
Victims of Hurricane Katrina worked together to survive the disaster and rebuild their city while the federal government infamously struggled to assist the relief aid and recovery efforts of Louisiana despite King’s claims.
Comments made by King questioning why white supremacy was racist were condemned back in January with a 424 to 1 vote to condemn them.