Iowa Starting Line: “With time running out to turn around her reelection campaign, it seems like Joni Ernst simply doesn’t have any new ideas of how to slow Theresa Greenfield down”

Senator Joni Ernst entered Saturday’s Senate debate desperate for a rebound after a disastrous debate last Monday failed to improve her miserable standing in the polls. Instead, Ernst spent an hour on the defensive lying about six years of selling out Iowans’ health care, farms, and Social Security to her corporate special interest donors, and making excuses for spreading false COVID-19 conspiracy theories that downplay the virus and slander Iowa’s frontline health care heroes.

Ernst’s re-election frustration has clearly reached a boiling point as she repeats debunked smear attacks against Theresa Greenfield that have been proven false time and again.

What Iowans saw clearly on Saturday night is that Washington has changed Senator Ernst. After spending six years voting to gut coverage protections for pre-existing conditions, putting Big Oil ahead of Iowa farmers, and working to gut Social Security, the only ones that Ernst has made “squeal” are Iowans.

Here’s what Iowans are reading about Senator Ernst’s debate disaster:

Iowa Starting Line: In Debate, Ernst Regrets COVID Conspiracy ‘May Have Offended’ Doctors

“Democrat Theresa Greenfield asked Ernst to apologize for furthering coronavirus conspiracy theories about the U.S. death toll and the role of health care professionals in diagnosing COVID-19 patients.

Though Ernst did apologize, she cushioned her response by saying she was ‘sorry that my words may have offended’ health care workers.”

From the Des Moines Register:

“In one exchange, Greenfield called on Ernst to apologize to health care workers for comments she made at a campaign stop last month. There, Ernst echoed a conspiracy theory by expressing skepticism about the reported coronavirus numbers and suggesting health care workers might be inflating them to get higher reimbursements from Medicare. The senator said Saturday she had offered an apology to health care workers.”

From the Cedar Rapids Gazette:

“Greenfield suggested Ernst wants to privatize or even ‘defund’ Social Security… Democrats have seized on Ernst previously saying she believes the parties need to work on the issue ‘behind closed doors.'” 

From Iowa Capital Dispatch:

“Greenfield asked Ernst whether she would apologize for pushing ‘a conspiracy theory that suggests doctors and nurses are liars and cheats.’

Greenfield was referring to Ernst’s response to a question at a town hall in which she said she was ‘skeptical’ of reported deaths due to COVID-19 and suggested a financial motive of increased reimbursements for COVID cases for inflating numbers.

Ernst said she had apologized for that statement. ‘I will apologize again tonight. I’m so sorry that my words may have offended you,’ she said.”

From the Daily Iowan:

“Democratic candidate Theresa Greenfield accused Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of wanting to defund and privatize social security and Medicaid, and Ernst said she has ‘never once voted to cut social security or Medicaid.’ …

In 2014 [Ernst] suggested allowing young workers to put some of their payroll taxes into a savings account that accumulates interest rather than social security, according to”

From the Iowa Starting Line Newsletter, 10/5/2020:

“With time running out to turn around her reelection campaign, it seems like Joni Ernst simply doesn’t have any new ideas of how to slow Theresa Greenfield down… 

Greenfield’s biggest weakness, in Ernst’s eyes anyway, is a misleading, unclear hit on a business practice from years ago that’s pretty routine. What’s worse for Ernst is that they’ve already tried this line of attack, only to see it go nowhere.”