Rep. Steve King is known as one of the staunchest opponents of immigration reform. So when the Iowa Republican made typical Steve King comments earlier this month about a somewhat modest immigration proposal, it became the perfect fooder for the pro-reform, Mark Zuckerberg-backed organization FWD.us.
"We're not going to take your oath into the military, but we're going to take your deposition and have a bus for you to Tijuana," King told Breitbart about his opposition to a proposal from Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Calif., to allow dreamers who serve in the military to qualify for legal status.
"Citizenship must be precious, not handed out like candy in a parade," King said later on the House floor.
Those comments are highlighted in a pair of new ads from FWD.us, a group backed by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to help push immigration reform. The spots will run online and on broadcast television in Iowa through the end of April's congressional recess.
One ad features Alejandro Morales, who FWD.us says was brought illegally to the U.S. as a baby. Morales talks about his desire to serve in the military after spending his youth in ROTC. "America is the only country I've ever known," he says. King's comments are displayed as Morales speaks.
The second ad is more directly focused on King's opposition to Denham's proposal, called the Enlist Act.
Earlier this month, the prospect of Denham's military-immigration proposal making its way into the underlying text of a must-pass defense bill set off alarm bells for immigration hawks, who successfully stopped such a move. The Enlist Act could still come up as an amendment to the defense bill or as a standalone measure. Denham has 48 cosponsors, evenly split among Republicans and Democrats.
Although FWD.us is going hard after King, the organization doesn't have plans to utilize similar messaging against other elected officials. And the group's GOP arm has tried to give cover to Republicans to support reform in the past, dropping $750,000 on television ads earlier this year.
Don't Miss Today's Top Stories
Chock full of usable information on today's issues."
Michael, Executive Director
Concise coverage of everything I wish I had hours to read about."
Chuck, Graduate Student
The day's action in one quick read."
Stacy, Director of Communications
Great way to keep up with Washington"
Ray, Professor of Economics