Rep. Steve King (of "Obama is very, very urban fame) has announced how he'd spend the next two years. Luckily, he'll be chairing just one subcommittee, unluckily, it's the Judiciary subcommittee on immigration, citizenship, refugees, border security and international law. But his jurisdiction over what he wants to investigate is questionable. The racism behind his targets, no so much in question.
In an interview with local western Iowa radio station KCIM, King discussed the oversight efforts that the new GOP House would undertake. First and foremost, he said, would be his pet cause of investigating ACORN -- which no longer exists as a national organization, but whose activists at the state level could be targeted.
"And there'll be other investigations looking into the Pigford farms issue," King added, "which I think is full of fraud, that's -- what it amounts to is paying reparations to black farmers in America. We don't do reparations in America."
King has previously attacked the settlement for discrimination in past decades by the Department of Agriculture as "slavery reparations".
For the record, the Pigford settlement announced in February and passed by Congress in November, acknowledges that for decades black farmers were discriminated against by the federal government. Current Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack, in discussing the settlement, acknowledged that in the worst cases black farmers lost their farms because local administrators delayed their loans. How Steve King sees it:
"The fraudulent claims might be, well Johnny, yeah he was raised on a farm but he wouldn't help his dad. He went to the city, became a drug addict, and when Daddy needed the help, Johnny wouldn't come and help his daddy. But now his daddy's died and Johnny wants the $50,000 that comes from the USDA under this claim."
The only good news out of this is that King is going to be an ongoing headache and total PR nightmare for Boehner.