Rep. Peter King (R-NY) reeeeally doesn’t like the New York Times.
In an interview with The Hill, King responded to an editorial printed in the Times over the weekend that rebuked King for his plans to hold hearings on the “radicalization” of American Muslims. “I’m absolutely delighted that The New York Times would attack me,” King said of the article. “I have nothing but contempt for them. They should be indicted under the Espionage Act. … The New York Times is just basically being a mouthpiece for political correctness.”
The editorial, from January 1, calls the hearings “disturbing” and a “sweeping slur on Muslim citizens.”
“I’m certainly not going to take any political advice or direction from The New York Times,” King said in response. “I have more contempt for The New York Times than anything or anyone I can think of.”
Susan Crabtree of The Hill writes that this is nothing new:
King has a longstanding contempt for The New York Times, so his aggressive response comes as no surprise. When he said the newspaper should be tried for espionage, he was referring to an article it published a few years ago about the government’s secret tracking of terrorist financing that relied on cooperation with U.S. and international banks. He said the policy was perfectly legal and effective at the time, but the Times article undercut the program because international banks became less cooperative.
A Times spokesman defended the column to The Hill: “We continue to believe that Rep. King’s plan to hold hearings next month on what he calls the ‘radicalization of the American Muslim community’ is an unacceptable slur on the vast majority of hardworking and law abiding American Muslims.”