Local man douses King
By JARED STRONG
A 26-year-old Jefferson native was arrested Friday for throwing a glass full of water onto U.S. Rep. Steve King as he ate lunch at a restaurant in Fort Dodge.
Blake Gibbins, of Lafayette, Colo., is charged with assault and disorderly conduct, according to the Fort Dodge Police Department.
Gibbins was a 2010 graduate of Jefferson-Scranton High School.
He is accused of approaching King at Mineral City Mill and Grill about 12:30 p.m. and attacking him with water after Gibbins asked King who he was.
“Based on witness information it is believed Mr. King was specifically targeted due to his position as a United States representative,” police said.
Some of the water also hit another man who was dining with King, a Republican from Kiron.
Gibbins did not respond to a request to comment.
Someone who claims to have grown up with Gibbins in Jefferson created an online fundraiser to pay Gibbins’ legal fees, fines and court costs.
“Nearly everybody knows Steve King is a boob,” the woman wrote on GoFundMe. “Blake did what many of us wish we could do. Let’s show him our support for his actions!”
The fundraiser exceeded its goal of $3,000 in one day.
King has a history of making divisive remarks but has come under fire recently because of his remarks published in January by The New York Times that appeared to question why white supremacy is offensive.
King has said the quotation was taken out of context, but Republican leaders stripped him of his committee assignments. Two Republicans have said they will challenge King in the next primary election in 2020.
King narrowly won re-election last year to his House seat, which represents northwest Iowa. He defeated Democrat J.D. Scholten with 50.4 percent of the vote.