In case you were wondering how long it would take before a member of Congress used the Boston bombings to make a political point, the answer is less than 24 hours.
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), a prominent House conservative and longtime opponent of immigration reform, told the National Review that the bombing in Boston should make lawmakers cautious about rushing an immigration bill.
Said King: "Some of the speculation that has come out is that yes, it was a foreign national and, speculating here, that it was potentially a person on a student visa. If that's the case, then we need to take a look at the big picture."
He added: "We need to be ever vigilant. We need to go far deeper into our border crossings... We need to take a look at the visa-waiver program and wonder what we're doing. If we can't background-check people that are coming from Saudi Arabia, how do we think we are going to background check the 11 to 20 million people that are here from who knows where?"
A bipartisan immigration reform proposal was announced this morning after months of tough negotiations. But the fact that federal investigators don't know who is behind the Boston attacks or the motive for them didn't matter at all to King. He's intent on stopping the legislation and isn't going to let facts get in his way.
It's a good reminder to other lawmakers — and all Americans — that they shouldn't pay any attention to him. It's also a clue as to why he's not being invited to meetings on the issue anymore.