There we are enjoying breakfast as much as anyone can these days listening to NPR’s Morning Edition. The Iowa news segment is on and the story is about the incredibly close election in Iowa’s second district. As the story states:
Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks says she’s gotten every indication she will be sworn in next month to serve as the next representative for Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District. Last month, the bipartisan state Executive Council certified her six vote victory over Democrat Rita Hart, who has since said she’ll appeal to the Democratically-controlled U.S. House to review the results.
The story went on with a quote from Miller-Meeks that hit my ear like a clunker in a well tuned philharmonic orchestra:
“All the indications I have is that I will be sworn in on January 3rd,” Miller-Meeks said. “We think that, you know, all legal votes have been counted. They have been recounted, I’ve now been certified as the winner. So yes, it’s that process of preparing to…to be sworn in on January 3rd, and setting up our district offices, which I think is a very important part.”
As you note I have bolded the part of that quote that hit like a clunker. “All legal votes.” Good Gawd I thought, she’s not even in office and she has already identified herself as yet another toady of Trump’s. The words “legal votes” have been a couple of the words that are featured in Trump’s temper tantrums on what he claims is a stolen election.
By using the language of the radical right and putting herself into the sphere of “alternative reality” Miller-Meeks lets us know right off that she has no intention of representing the people of the second district. She will be an acolyte of whatever the extremist right is. Note that whoever was elected from this district should be expected to take a truly middle course since the district is so incredibly close to being exactly evenly split.
The district is so evenly split that the percentage between the two candidates (6 votes out of nearly 400,000 cast) is .0015%. I have seen that called a vapor difference in other instances. I have no doubt that were the results flipped, Miller-Meeks would be seeking any type of relief she could. Thus Miller-Meeks seeming outrage at Hart’s decision to turn to the US House appears much more theatrics than genuine concern.
Miller-Meeks also spoke of seeking changes in some election processes from the Iowa legislature. No doubt with Republicans heavily in charge of the Iowa legislature election reforms would be high on the legislature’s priorities. Iowa’s famous non-partisan redistricting will probably most likely be a memory when redistricting comes around. Expect Iowa to join every other state in the gerrymandering practices.
I think we can probably expect the legislature to do something about those “legal votes” or better stated those “illegal votes” that seem to bedevil the Republican Party across the country. As if voter role purges and other voter suppression tactics haven’t taken a big chunk out of the Democratic vote across the country. It appears as long as there are voters who vote for Democrats, Republicans will claim “illegal votes.” At least that seems to be the definition of the Trump team.
Thursday we have Governor Reynolds making a statement about counting “legal votes. From the Iowa Capital Dispatch:
“Echoing President Trump’s assertion that “every legal vote” must be counted in the 2020 election, Gov. Kim Reynolds said Thursday that Iowa didn’t have the opportunity to join a lawsuit that seeks to delay certification of the election results.”
If Miller-Meeks is finally seated in congress, her constituents will need to learn how to speak Republicanese and watch for those words that are trigger words for the right. We will also have to watch the dance Republicans love to do when they refuse to directly answer questions.
It will be quite a change from Dave Loebsack. One thing we got from Dave Loebsack was honesty. Like many, there were times I didn’t like what he said, nut that is just being human. We never really had to ask Loebsack what he meant. He was honest and thorough in his answers.
The other thing we never had to question about Loebsack was whether he was working for the 2nd district. From his work on rural internet to health care to jobs and water Dave put the district, not his party at the forefront of his work. He will be a hard act to follow. Rita Hart would be – and still might be – a very similar type of representative.
A new dictionary may be needed in your future.