Washington, DC — Two of Iowa’s US lawmakers have redirected campaign donations from a white supremacist who reportedly influenced the man accused of murdering nine African Americans in a South Carolina church last week. Senator Joni Ernst and Congressman Steve King are giving the money to the church in South Carolina as well as the families of those murdered there.
Earl Holt of Longview, Texas, donated a thousand dollars to the Ernst campaign last fall and made 25-hundred dollars in donations to King’s last two reelection campaigns. Holt is a leader of the Council of Conservative Citizens. The church shooter has said he was inspired by information he found on that group’s website. Holt’s occupation is listed as “retired” alongside the F-E-C’s record of his donations to both Ernst and King.
King posted a statement on his campaign website, saying his prayers are with the families and friends of those affected by the tragedy in South Carolina.
Holt also donated to presidential candidates Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Rick Santorum, all of whom have denounced Holt in the past two days and redirected his campaign money to help the South Carolina church and those who were slain there last Wednesday.
Holt has called African Americans “the laziest, stupidest and most criminally-inclined race in the history of the world.” Holt has posted a statement on the web saying his group is “hardly responsible” for the actions of a “deranged” shooter “merely because he gleaned accurate information from our website.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center classifies Holt’s “Council of Conservative Citizens” as the “reincarnation” of “White Citizens Councils” of the 1950s and ’60s that served as a national network for white supremacists.
Story from Radio Iowa