The unearthed recording of Iowa Senate candidate Joni Ernst decrying the fact that Americans are insufficiently “self-sufficient” has invited comparisons to the hidden camera footage of Mitt Romney writing off 47 percent of the electorate, and commentary on the candor with which she lumps government health insurance subsidies (which she, too, enjoys as a state employee) together with welfare spending. But the most revealing thing about the comments is how breezily she renders contradictory judgments about the concept of dependency. Because it is apparently not dependency, but rather poverty, that she finds so abhorrent.
Less than three weeks until Election Day, Democrats are clinging to last-minute signs of hope in Iowa's competitive Senate race, which is just one of a handful that may determine which party controls the upper chamber in January. According to data compiled by Democrats and shared with The Huffington Post on Wednesday, Rep. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) holds a slight advantage in early vote totals over his Republican opponent, state Sen. Joni Ernst (R). As of this week, of the 26,000 voters who already cast ballots and who did not vote in the 2010 midterm election, 50 percent are registered Democrats, 28 percent are unaffiliated, and 22 percent are registered Republicans. Democrats project this group of voters breaks toward the four-term congressman by more than a 2-to-1 margin.
In the exceedingly tight contest to become Iowa's next senator, Saturday's closely watched debate between Bruce Braley and Joni Ernst had the candidates trying to make each other blue by talking green. When it comes to energy, Ernst, a Republican state senator, and Braley, a Democratic congressman, both have controversial positions to defend to voters. Ernst elaborated on her position to shutter the Environmental Protection Agency, a move that critics say will make Iowa more polluted. Braley, meanwhile, explained his flip-flopping on the Keystone Pipeline that has left some Iowans skeptical about his commitment to create jobs.
State Sen. Joni Ernst, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Iowa, once said she would support legislation that would allow "local law enforcement to arrest federal officials attempting to implement" Obamacare. Ernst voiced her support for that, as well as supporting legislation that would "nullify" Obamacare in a Iowa State Legislative Candidates survey for Ron Paul's libertarian-aligned Campaign for Liberty in 2012. It can be viewed here. The question was: "Will you support legislation to nullify ObamaCare and authorize state and local law enforcement to arrest federal officials attempting to implement the unconstitutional health care scheme known as ObamaCare?" Ernst answered that question as "yes."
On Sunday, Democrat Bruce Braley and Republican Joni Ernst square off for their first debate in the Iowa Senate race. Given that this tight contest is looking increasingly pivotal to Senate control, the debates could help influence the fall outcome. So here’s something to watch out for. Republicans — and not a few political reporters — will be searching for any moment they can find that helps them spin out their chosen narrative: Supercilious trial lawyer talks down to farm girl. That language — “farm girl” — is how Ernst describes herself in one ad.