House GOP leader endorses Mariannette Miller-Meeks in Iowa 2nd District primary race

Sen. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Ottumwa, speaks Feb. 15 at a legislative briefing in Fairfield. Miller-Meeks, who is se
Sen. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Ottumwa, speaks Feb. 15 at a legislative briefing in Fairfield. Miller-Meeks, who is seeking the Republican nomination in Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District, gained the endorsement of Republican House minority leader Kevin McCarthy. (Gretchen Teske/Southeast Iowa Union)

CEDAR RAPIDS — State Sen. Mariannette Miller-Meeks’ bid for the Republican nomination in Iowa’s 2nd District has been endorsed by the party’s leader in the U.S. House.

California Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the House minority leader, has endorsed Miller-Meeks as someone who “represents the goals, interests and aspirations of the people” of the 24-county district that includes Johnson, Muscatine and Scott counties.

“Her hard work and dedication to service are needed more than ever to flip this Democrat-held seat for the people,” McCarthy said. “Candidates like Mariannette will help us regain control of the People’s House and give President Trump a Congress that works with him each day rather than obstructs his every move to strengthen our economy, secure our borders and make health care more affordable and accessible to working families.”

His endorsement speaks volumes about the importance of the 2nd District in Republicans’ effort to regain the House majority, Miller-Meeks said.

“He knows I’ll never quit fighting for conservative principles, and I’ll never give up on the people of Iowa,” she said. “His support is a clear message to Iowa and the rest of the country that the people of the 2nd District have an extraordinary opportunity to reshape our country’s future by standing with me on June 2 and again in November.”

Miller-Meeks, an Army veteran and ophthalmologist, is in a five-way race for the GOP nomination. The other candidates are Tim Borchardt of Iowa City, Steven Everly of Knoxville, Rick Phillips of Pella and Bobby Schilling of Le Claire.

The winner will face Democrat Rita Hart of Wheatland, a former state senator. The winner will claim the 2nd District seat held by Democratic Rep. Dave Loebsack, who is not seeking reelection.


The 2nd District is rated as a “tossup,” according to national political forecasters. It’s the country’s only open Democratic-held district that President Donald Trump carried in 2016. A recent Des Moines Register Iowa Poll showed a generic Republican leading a generic Democrat by 8 percent in the district.

For more about Miller-Meeks, visit

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