Ignoring FEC Complaints of Illegal Coordination, “Iowa Values” is Out With its Latest Attempt to Gloss Over the Health Care Record that Dogs Ernst’s Re-election

Senator Joni Ernst’s illicit dark money group, Iowa Values, is out with a dizzying new ad that demonstrates exactly how Ernst and her top political aides intend to distort her real record of voting against Iowans’ health care in Washington. 

The ad sources each of its fraudulent claims to Ernst’s own U.S. Senate press releases, knowing full well that a nonpartisan fact-check would tell the real story. After half a decade of siding with Mitch McConnell and big insurance and pharma special interests, Ernst has amassed a dangerous and indisputable record of voting to dismantle the health care Iowans rely on.

Thankfully, the Iowa Democratic Party has created a handy health care fact-checker, supported by nonpartisan citations to deliver the truth Ernst doesn’t want out.

Iowa Values’ Claims

Ernst’s Real Record

“Joni Ernst is fighting for our Iowa values in Washington, working to cut prescription drug costs.” [US Senate Press Release, 8.7.2019] Ernst sponsored a bill that would allow insurers to charge higher prices for prescription coverage, that would make “plans effectively useless for people who need ongoing treatment.” [Huff Post, 9.3.2018]

Ernst sponsored “The Protect Act,” enabling insurance plans that might not cover prescription medicines for certain treatments, including cancer treatments. [Center For Budget And Policy Priorities, 4.15.2019]

Immediately after receiving $17,000 in donations from pharmaceutical PACs, Ernst sided with big pharma and refused to support capping prescription drug prices. [KCCI, 7.15.2019]

Ernst voted against bipartisan reform to lower the cost of prescription drugs, an effort supported by her fellow Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley. [1.11.2017]

Ernst again broke with Grassley on his effort to prevent drug companies from arbitrarily raising prescription drug costs. [The Hill, 1.10.2020]

Ernst supported repealing the Medicare prescription drug donut hole that was patched in the ACA, saving Iowa seniors nearly $76 million on prescription drug costs. [IBNA/KCRG Debate, 5.3.2014]

“Joni always looks out for those most in need, especially those with pre-existing conditions.” [U.S. Senate Press Release, 1.18.2018] FACT CHECK: “Ernst was one of 49 Republicans who voted for the skinny repeal,” which would have enabled insurers to discriminate against Iowans with pre-existing conditions. [Cedar Rapids Gazette, 9.30.2019]

FACT CHECK: Ernst voted for a bill that “would have let insurers charge more to those with pre-existing health conditions…that different treatment fits the definition of discrimination.” [KCRG, 9.30.2019]

Ernst bragged that she had “the courage” to vote for a bill that ends protections on coverage for pre-existing conditions. [Cedar Rapids Gazette, 9.22.2017]

Ernst co-wrote a health care bill scored as a “fraud,” “mirage,” and “shell game” that would fail to protect coverage for pre-existing conditions. [Huff Post, 8.24.2018]

Ernst co-sponsored The Obamacare Repeal Act, which would have ended protections on coverage for pre-existing conditions. [2.2.2015]

Ernst sponsored “The Protect Act,” that made a “false promise” to protect people with pre-existing conditions. [Los Angeles Times, 4.12.2019]

Ernst voted to defend toxic “junk” insurance plans that can deny coverage for pre-existing conditions. [The Hill, 10.10.2018]

Asked whether she would repeal the Affordable Care Act and its protections on coverage of pre-existing conditions, Ernst said, “I think we have to repeal Obamacare in its entirety.” [IBNA/KCRG Debate, 5.3.2014]

Ernst refused to oppose the Republican lawsuit to end protections for pre-existing conditions. [WHBF, 4.28.2019]