Democrat lawyer Marc Elias argued Monday in a filing with the U.S. House Committee on House Administration that Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-IA) and the Republican Party have “hostility to fundamental democratic norms.”
Elias claims there are 22 outstanding ballots that should have been counted, even though Iowa election officials rejected them as illegal. Rather than filing a challenge in state court, he has turned to the Democrat-run House to use its powers under the Federal Contested Elections Act (FCEA) to unseat Miller-Meeks and replace her with Rita Hart, who lost to Miller-Meeks in the 2020 election. The Republicans have allegedly taken to stop the voting procedure.
Elias’s filings attack Miller-Meeks’s ties to the Republican Party, claiming the Party’s “hostility to fundamental democratic norms,” including the “baseless attempts of its standard-bearer”:
Contestee Miller-Meeks’s adamant opposition to Contestant Hart’s efforts to count these lawful ballots is alarming, but not surprising. Her obstruction is consistent with her party’s outright hostility to fundamental democratic norms, from the baseless attempts of its standard-bearer and his allies to throw out hundreds of thousands of lawful votes and overturn the will of the people last November, to its refusal to uniformly condemn the assault on our democracy that unfolded on January 6, to its unanimous opposition to the For the People Act and other legislative efforts to safeguard the vote, to its open hostility to this attempt to prevent the disenfranchisement of 22 Iowans. The position of Contestee Miller-Meeks and the Republican Party is now clear: the right to vote is worthy of neither respect nor protection.
Hart lost the race for Iowa’s Second Congressional District by six votes to Miller-Meeks after all the late ballots were counted, an outcome that was further confirmed by a recount. Miller-Meeks’s narrow victory was then certified by Iowa state election authorities.
Miller-Meeks maintained the lead and never fell behind Hart during the original count and the recount.
During the 2020 election cycle, Elias represented Democrats against President Donald Trump’s challenges to the election results.
Paul Pate, Iowa’s secretary of state, wrote a letter Monday to Pelosi in support of Miller-Meeks by denouncing Hart’s efforts to overturn a state-certified House race. Pate argued that Hart’s campaign should have used all the legal possibilities in the state of Iowa before going to the federal level, where her party controls the chamber.
In Pate’s letter, he wrote the administration of Iowa’s elections process was done in either a bipartisan or a nonpartisan way during the original count and the recount. “Rita Hart chose to bypass the nonpartisan Iowa process and take her challenge to the U.S. House of Representatives where her political party has the power to grant her a seat she did not win,” Pate wrote.
He explained the bipartisan process was “comprised of one representative from the Miller-Meeks campaign, one representative from the Hart campaign, and a third member who was was agreed upon by the other two representatives or appointed by a district judge.” After all the recounts had been completed, the Hart campaign signed off on all of the procedures and results.
Breitbart News reported the efforts to overturn the election would be harder for the Democrats due to their slimming majority, multiple Democrats defecting from Pelosi, and mounting pressure from numerous editorial boards across the country who have cited Pelosi’s efforts to overturn the election as a power grab.