Miller-Meeks leads 2nd District by six votes with all county recounts complete

The results are set to be certified by the state canvassing board on Monday, but legal challenges from the Hart campaign are still possible.


Kate Heston

U.S. Congressional candidate Mariannette Miller-Meeks approaches the stage at the Riverside Casino after winning the election against her opponent, D. Rita Hart, Tuesday night.

Lauren White, Politics Reporter

The battle for Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District has narrowed once again as Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks leads by a razor-thin six-vote margin following the recount in all counties in the district. The state canvass board will meet Monday to certify results.

Clinton County was the last county in the 2nd District to finalize a recount of votes for the congressional race between Miller-Meeks and Democrat Rita Hart. At the end of the recount process, the vote margin between the candidates decreased from 47 votes to six votes. 

Zach Meuiner, Hart’s campaign manager, said in a press release that the opposing candidates campaign has sought to keep legitimate votes from being counted. 

“We have said from the beginning of this recount process that the most important thing is that Iowans’ voices are heard and their votes are counted fairly. Moreover, under Iowa law the recount was limited to the universe of ballots initially counted after Election Day. We will closely review what the county and state boards do on Monday with an eye toward making sure all Iowa voices are fully and fairly heard,” Meuiner said. 

Meuiner did not say whether the campaign would file a legal challenge of the results. If Miller-Meeks’ lead holds, she will replace retiring Democratic Congressman Dave Loebsack as the representative for the 2nd Congressional District.

Once each county canvass board finalizes its summary and submits it to the county auditor, those auditors report the results to Secretary of State Paul Pate. The canvassing process is expected to begin on Monday. 

Miller-Meeks tweeted out a statement following the final county recount. She thanked county auditors, their staff, and volunteers for their work during this election and claimed a close victory of the congressional seat. 

“While the race is extraordinarily close, I am proud to have won this contest and look forward to being certified as the winner by the state’s Executive Council on Monday,” Miller-Meeks said. “…From 24 years of service to our country in the U.S. Army and Army reserves to my several decades of protecting the health of Iowans as a medical professional, I will bring that same Iowa grit to Congress by working to strengthen our healthcare system, combat the COVID pandemic, and get Iowans safely back to work and school.”


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