Rep. Steve King stands behind comments that migrant children are sent to U.S. on 'rape path'

Representative King on April 12, 2014 in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Representative King on April 12, 2014 in Manchester, New Hampshire.  (2014 Getty Images)

Rep. Steve King caused widespread controversy earlier this summer when he said that families of Central American migrant children “give their daughters birth control pills and send them down a rape path all the way through Mexico” because the White House has created a magnet for migrants with its policies.

On Tuesday, the Iowa Republican did not back down from the comments made in July.

“I would say to the families that were upset about what I had to say about their vulnerability to rape: What I delivered is what I learned down there from caregivers, and we should be upset – all of us should be upset – about a circumstance where families would send their daughters up with a 30 to 70 percent chance of being sexually abused on the way,” he said while appearing on CNN. “That’s appalling for me. I can’t imagine doing that with, say, one of my granddaughters.”

King’s original comments were made when Congress – and the country – was grappling with unprecedented influx of undocumented, unaccompanied child migrants coming to the U.S.-Mexico border.

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On Tuesday, King said that the House bill passed in August in response to the child migrant surge aimed at enhancing border security could be approved by the Senate in the new session. He said the bill would help families.

“It sends people back instead of putting them in the custody of (the Department of Health and Human Services),” he said. “We cannot have an open borders policy. We’ll empty out Central America, and then the United States is going to be buried under the burden of the social services that we so willingly provide.”

King has openly opposed to the expected executive order on immigration hinted by president Obama.

The specific polices included in the final version of the executive action remain unclear, but it may include plans to tighten border security, expand work visas, and extend a DACA-type relief to more undocumented immigrants.

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