Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) said he does not want Somali Muslims working in meat-packing plants in his district for fear of them thinking consumers will go “to hell for eating pork chops.”

King made this comment and further offensive comments in an interview with Breitbart Radio last month. In his interview, he claimed that Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), whom he referred to to as the “lead Muslim in Congress,” told him that Muslims would need a “special dispensation” from an imam before working with pork. Ellison, who was the only Muslim member of Congress when he was elected in 2006, has criticized King for making “incredibly ignorant” remarks in the past.

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“The rationale is that if infidels are eating this pork, they aren’t eating it,” King said. “So as long as they’re preparing this pork for infidels, it helps send them to hell and it’ll make Allah happy. I don’t want people doing my pork that won’t eat it. Let alone hope I’ll go to hell for eating pork chops.”


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The percentage of workers in the plants of Somali origin are less than one third of 1 percent of the total number of workers, according to an analysis done for the Des Moines Register by Liesl Eathington of Iowa State University.


King has a history of making insensitive and offensive racial comments, particularly on Twitter. Last week, King tweeted an article about a Swedish soccer tournament that had removed pork from the menu and said, “Sweden has capitulated to halal.” He also retweeted a prominent British neo-Nazi after calling a group of migrant boys “prime MS-13 gang material.”


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