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Iowa congresswoman tweets misinformation about Biden, unvaccinated veterans

The Republican congresswoman shared a satirical article about President Joe Biden that says unvaccinated veterans will lose their health benefits.

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowa Republican Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks is standing by her decision to share misinformation about President Joe Biden and his actions to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Sunday evening, Miller-Meeks tweeted a link to a satirical article from the website DelawareOhioNews.com.

She added the statement, "If true, this is insane!"

The article describes a fake announcement from President Biden regarding unvaccinated veterans losing their health benefits from the Department of Veteran Affairs.

Biden made no such announcement.

A disclaimer on DelawareOhioNews.com states, "All stories herein are parodies (satire, fiction, fake, not real) of people and/or actual events. All names are made up (unless used in a parody of public figures) and any similarity is purely coincidental."

Miller-Meeks shared the article and her thoughts about it with her more than 11,000 followers on Twitter. She represents more than 782,000 Iowans in Iowa's 2nd Congressional District.

Local 5 asked Miller-Meeks for an interview regarding her decision to spread misinformation online through the article, satirical or not.

Misinformation is defined as false information that is spread, regardless of intent to mislead.

 Miller-Meeks declined an interview but provided this statement:

"I retweeted a story about President Biden requiring the VA to withhold benefits from unvaccinated veterans, saying 'if true, this is insane.' The story and website is obviously satire and makes a powerful point. President Biden’s executive orders about COVID-19 have been classic examples of government overreach and these days the unbelievable has become reality."

Miller-Meeks continued: "With Americans trapped in Afghanistan, a immigration crisis on the southern border, and an unconstitutional overreach by President Biden to mandate COVID-19 vaccines, the media surely has more important things to cover than satirical tweets."

Local 5 asked for clarification on what "powerful point" the article made, but a spokesperson declined to further clarify.

Miller-Meeks' team also declined to comment regarding the congresswoman's decision to share misinformation online. 

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