House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy warned Friday that House Democrats are trying to "steal" a House seat from Republicans.
What is the background?
The Democrat-controlled House Administration Committee announced Wednesday they would not dismiss Democrat Rita Hart's claims that she is the rightful winner of Iowa's second congressional district in the 2020 election. Hart lost to Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks by just six votes.
Miller-Meeks sought to dismiss Hart's challenge, but the Administration Committee voted down party lines to reject Miller-Meeks' motion.
Hart challenged the election outcome in December under the Federal Contested Election Act. Hart claims 22 legally cast ballots went uncounted in the election, but if they were counted, the net result would make her the winner of the election.
Hart's challenge is particularly controversial because Miller-Meek's victory was confirmed by a recount and a "bipartisan canvassing of the ballots cast in the race," the Iowa City Press-Citizen reported. Hart also refused to exhaust her legal remedies in Iowa courts before appealing directly to the House.
What did McCarthy say?
Speaking with Fox News host Sean Hannity, McCarthy said House Democrats are seriously considering Hart's claims because they want to "steal" the seat from Miller-Meeks and expand their slim five-seat majority over Republicans.
"Congresswoman Miller-Meeks not only won on Election Day, she is the duly elected congresswoman. She also won the recount. She is certified; she is serving," McCarthy said. "She's on the [House Veterans' Affairs] Committee as well, she has offered an amendment against that COVID bill to help the vets. The Democrats voted against it."
"But what is really happening here, Sean, you know it," McCarthy continued. "The Democrats have the smallest majority in their history in the last 100 years — only five seats."
"So, every seat they can steal helps them be able to pass the most socialist things they can," the California Republican explained.
McCarthy also accused Democrats of "hypocrisy" for challenging the election of a duly-elected congresswoman but denouncing all attempts by former President Donald Trump's to challenge President Joe Biden's victory.
KEVIN MCCARTHY | SEAN HANNITY INTERIVEW 3.12.21 www.youtube.com
What did Miller-Meeks say?
Speaking Friday on Fox News, Miller-Meeks accused Hart of leveraging Democrats' House majority in an attempt to override the will of Iowa voters.
"What my opponent wants to do is to violate Iowa law, go against Iowa law, and go against the representation of the voters of Iowa, and disenfranchise 400,000 voters because she didn't get the results she wanted," Miller-Meeks said.
"She said that in a video. She said she skipped over the Iowa courts and had to go to the House Committee on Administration to get the results we need, not the results of the voters, not the results of the election law in Iowa, but to have Congress decide who gets to represent Iowa's 2nd congressional district," Miller-Meeks continued.
"States should rule their election, voters in that state should decide who represents them," Miller-Meeks declared. This is a process where they want to go against the laws of our state, the election laws of our state, against the voters of our state, and to determine who they want to seat in Congress."