US House lawmaker receives death threats after voting against Jordan for speaker

By Moira Warburton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Representative Mariannette Miller-Meeks has received “credible death threats,” she said in a statement on Wednesday, after voting against Representative Jim Jordan for speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Jordan, a hardline conservative, was formally nominated by a majority of his party last week but has been unsuccessful in getting the necessary 217 Republicans to back him in two House votes so far, with more lawmakers from his own party opposing him on Wednesday than in the first vote on Tuesday. A third vote is expected to take place on Thursday.

Miller-Meeks, a Republican who represents a politically competitive district in Iowa, voted for Jordan the first time but switched to vote for Representative Kay Granger, chair of the House Appropriations Committee, on Wednesday afternoon.

Since then, Miller-Meeks said in a statement, she has received “a barrage of threatening calls” in addition to multiple death threats. She added that the authorities have been notified and her office is fully cooperating.

“One thing I cannot stomach, or support is a bully,” she said. “I did not stand for bullies before I voted for Chairwoman Granger and when I voted for Speaker designee Jordan, and I will not bend to bullies now.”

It was not immediately clear who made the threats.

“We condemn all threats against our colleagues and it is imperative that we come together,” Jordan said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter. “Stop. It’s abhorrent.”

Jordan has struggled to win over both moderates who do not feel he understands the issues their districts face, and others who have expressed concern about Jordan’s ability to unite the party.

Although lawmakers who are withholding their support have said Jordan himself has been courteous and kind in conversations attempting to win them over, many have spoken out about the bullying tactics of his supporters.

“The last thing you want to do is try to intimidate or pressure me, because then I close out entirely,” Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, a Republican who has refused to support Jordan, told reporters earlier this week.

(Reporting by Moira Warburton in Washington; Editing by Noeleen Walder and Christopher Cushing)