Former Vice President Joe BidenJoseph (Joe) Robinette BidenFirefighters union leader says members are drawn to Biden Gillibrand to visit Iowa amid 2020 speculation: report Warren to make New Hampshire visit over the weekend MORE ripped Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump eyes wall money options as shutdown hits 21 days GOP campaign committee chair says NRCC likely won't get involved in Steve King primary Steve King identifies himself as a 'nationalist,' defends earlier comments MORE (R-Iowa) on Friday for his comments questioning how the terms “white nationalist” and “white supremacist” became offensive.
Biden took to Twitter on Friday night to blast the outspoken Republican, who attempted to defuse the controversy earlier in the day with a speech on the House floor.
“White supremacists and their shameful ideology should have no place in this country in 2019, let alone a voice of sympathy in the United States Congress,” Biden wrote.
White supremacists and their shameful ideology should have no place in this country in 2019, let alone a voice of sympathy in the United States Congress. https://t.co/SNZD8wt7V6— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) January 12, 2019
King made the initial remarks in an interview with The New York Times published Thursday.
“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” King asked in the interview. “Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?”
King’s comments drew widespread backlash, with some lawmakers calling for the House to censure him, and Speaker Pelosi (D-Calif.) saying there is “interest” to take action on him.
"One phrase in that long article has created an unnecessary controversy. That was my mistake," King said on the House floor on Friday. "I've never been anti-immigrant. I have been anti-illegal immigrant, and I remain that way.”
Biden is seen by many as a top possible Democratic presidential candidate in 2020. He has said he would make a decision soon regarding his candidacy.
He has been an outspoken critic of Trump and has leant his voice to several Democratic causes in the years since he left the White House with former President Obama.