2020 elections

Iowa GOP Rep. Steve King loses primary, becomes lame duck

June 3, 2020
Tom Brenner/Getty Images

Nine-term Republican Rep. Steve King (Iowa), stripped of his committee assignments in 2018 after questioning why white nationalism is bad, lost his Republican primary on Tuesday night to state Sen. Randy Feenstra (R). King, a hardline conservative, has a long history of making controversial and incendiary remarks about immigrants, Muslims, and other issues, but his former supporters in Iowa's 4th Congressional District jumped ship after he was booted off the House Agriculture Committee, and to a lesser extent the Judiciary Committee.

"I personally feel very let down about some of the things that have happened because we need someone who is strong in agriculture from this area," state Sen. Annette Sweeney, who shifted support from King to Feenstra, told The Associated Press. King claimed House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) had pledged to support reinstating his committee assignments after the election, but McCarthy dismissed the claim. Feenstra's campaign was bankrolled by an array of conservative groups, including National Right to Life and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Republicans had warned that King might lose.

Iowa Democrats selected Des Moines businesswoman Theresa Greenfield as their nominee to take on Sen. Joni Ernst (R) in what could end up being a competitive race. Greenfield, 55, raised $7 million, much more than her three Democratic opponents. Peter Weber