Washington, Oct 19 (EFE).- Congresswoman Mariannette Miller-Meeks, representing Iowa as a Republican, has alleged receiving “credible death threats” and “a barrage of threatening” phone calls after retracting her support for Jim Jordan’s candidacy for House Speaker.
Miller-Meeks initially backed Jordan during the first round of votes on Tuesday. However, on Wednesday, she cast her vote for Kay Granger, a fellow Republican who leads the Appropriations Committee.
“Since my vote in support of Chairwoman Granger, I have received credible death threats and a barrage of threatening calls,” Miller-Meeks said in a statement Wednesday evening. “The proper authorities have been notified, and my office is cooperating fully.”
Jordan, a prominent Republican closely aligned with former President Donald Trump and associated with the far-right wing of the party, once again failed to amass enough votes on Wednesday to secure the position of House Speaker.
During the initial round of voting, Miller-Meeks was among four Republican House members who initially supported Jordan.
“After one round of votes, with my support, he (Jordan) was not able to secure enough votes for the Speaker nomination, and my initial concerns about the threatening tactics of Jordan’s supporters, including members of Congress, increased despite assurances,” she said.
Miller-Meeks voted for Granger “because she has demonstrated great leadership this year by bringing forth and passing fiscally responsible single-subject appropriations bills and is a staunch conservative.”
She denounced the intimidating tactics employed by Jordan’s supporters, stating that she could not “not stomach or support” bullying behavior.
“Someone who threatens another with bodily harm or tries to suppress differing opinions undermines the opportunity for unity and regard for freedom of speech,” she said.
On Wednesday, Jordan secured 199 votes, while his Democratic counterpart, Hakeem Jeffries, received 212 votes from his party members.
Neither candidate reached the required majority. In Tuesday’s vote, Jordan received 200 votes, with 20 of his colleagues not supporting him.
Conservatives have held 221 seats in the chamber since January, and Jordan needed 217 votes to secure the position.
However, 22 of his colleagues voted for candidates who were not even officially running.
The Speaker’s post has remained vacant since Oct. 3 when Kevin McCarthy was removed in a house vote.
Miller-Meeks stressed the party’s need for a consensus candidate to “get back to the work of forwarding appropriations, supporting Israel, and stopping the insane policies of the Biden Administration.”
At present, interim house leadership rests with conservative Patrick McHenry. However, without a new Speaker, the approval of new resolutions and bills remains impossible at a time when closing the budget for the current fiscal year and authorizing additional aid to Ukraine and Israel hang in the balance. EFE