Republican Congressman Steve King. Getty Images.

US Rep. Steve King loses Primary

King is not only a vile bigot but also a pro horse slaughter defender who worked vigorously on the Hill to defeat any and all attempts to ban it on U.S. soil. He was also a major player in blocking legislation outlawing the live export of horses for slaughter to Canada and Mexico. More on that down the page, but first this.

TRIP GABRIEL, writing for the New York Times, reports:

Representative Steve King of Iowa, the nine-term Republican with a history of racist comments who only recently became a party pariah, lost his bid for renomination early Wednesday, one of the biggest defeats of the 2020 primary season in any state.

In a five-way primary, Mr. King was defeated by Randy Feenstra, a state senator, who had the backing of mainstream state and national Republicans who found Mr. King an embarrassment and, crucially, a threat to a safe Republican seat if he were on the ballot in November.

The defeat was most likely the final political blow to one of the nation’s most divisive elected officials, whose insults of undocumented immigrants foretold the messaging of President Trump, and whose flirtations with extremism led him far from rural Iowa, to meetings with anti-Muslim crusaders in Europe and an endorsement of a Toronto mayoral candidate with neo-Nazi ties.

Good news for horses

King is pro horse slaughter and used his considerable influence in the nation’s Capitol to thwart any and all attempts to outlaw it. He and his allies were instrumental in rallying support to block virtually every American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act introduced.

In 2012 King was central to removing the defunding clause from the nation’s annual spending budget for federal inspections necessary to export horse meat which banned horse slaughter on U.S. soil.

King’s successful defunding paved the way for horse slaughter to return to U.S. soil, but horse lovers and advocates successfully thwarted every attempt to return it. The federal defunding clause was reestablished, and has been kept in effect in all subsequent U.S. budget bills, but not without a fight.

In 2017 when vigorous attempts were made to remove the defunding language for horse slaughter inspections from the federal spending bill, Phil Derfler, Deputy Administrator for Food Safety and Inspection Service, stated:

Open quote

There has been a lot of talk in the past week about Congress’ lifting of the ban prohibiting federal funding for the inspection of horses, which prevented the slaughter of horses for human consumption for the past five years.  The issue is understandably a sensitive and emotional one for everyone who loves these majestic animals, but it is important that the discussion be tempered with the facts.

“While Congress has technically lifted the ban, horse processing will not resume anytime in the near term.  Under the Federal Meat Inspection Act, horses are an amenable species, which means that horse meat cannot be shipped or sold for human consumption without inspection.

“To date, there have been no requests that the Department initiate the authorization process for any horse processing operation in the United States.  In the two states where horse processing took place prior to the Congressional ban, Illinois and Texas,  there are laws in place prohibiting the slaughter of horses.  Even if these laws were changed, any processing facility will still need to satisfy a significant number of requirements, such as obtaining  a federal grant of inspection, conducting a hazard analysis, and developing a Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points (HACCP) plan prior to the processing of any animals.”

This statement has been the underpinning of our renewal of the federal inspection ban ever since.

Typical of King, he voted last year against the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act, H.R. 693, a bill to crack down on the practice of “soring,” in which trainers deliberately inflict pain on the hooves and legs of Tennessee walking horses and related breeds to force them to perform an unnaturally high-stepping gait for competitions.


See our Horse Slaughter Legislative Timeline by Vivian Farrell and Jane Allin for a history of attempts to ban horse slaughter at the State and Federal levels. Go to Special Reports and scroll down to the Horse Slaughter Section. This is a unique and unrivalled resource. It begins in 1998 . . . .

See also the historic document “When Horse Slaughter Comes To Town” by Jane Allin which was instrumental in educating the public, and used by advocates, communities, State officials, lawmakers and businesses to work against horse slaughter from coming to their town.

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Featured Image: Getty Images

1 thought on “US Rep. Steve King loses Primary”

  1. This King bloke sounds like an ugly low-life. Good riddance to him. Any person who is pro-horse slaughter doesn’t deserve a place in society.

    Liked by 1 person

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