Incumbent Senator Ernst Defends Seat

11/11/20 By Anthony LaBruto

“Joni Ernst” by Gage Skidmore under CC BY-SA 2.0

With 99% ballots counted in Iowa, Joni Ernst will defend her senate seat in one of the most contested races in the country. Per Iowa election law, ballots postmarked by Nov. 3rd will still be counted until November 9th. 

Ernst, a retired lieutenant colonel from the Iowa National Guard, ran her first campaign in 2014 vowing to “cut pork” from national spending. Additionally, Ernst’s “make ‘em squeal” slogan humorously attracted many Iowans to her initial campaign. Senator Ernst is a strong supporter of President Trump, opposing reforms to the Affordable Healthcare Act and environmental regulations. Her no nonsense style of leadership has proven popular with the people of Iowa. 

The incumbent faced Theresa Greenfield, a tough Democratic challenger, who believed that Ernst was putting special interest groups ahead of Iowans. Marketing herself very similar to Ernst, Greenfield portrayed herself as an everyday Iowan. The widow strongly advocated for the expansion of Social security and workmen’s compensation. Additionally, her childhood as a farmer made her even more marketable to the state’s rural, farming population.  

Even with some outstanding absentee ballots, it is highly unlikely that the outcome of the race will change. Senator Ernst carved an impressive 16 point lead over Greenfield. While the race remained close throughout the past year, rural in-person votes appear to have given Ernst the boost she needed to majorly overtake Theresa Greenfield. The Democrats’ hopes to build a majority in the Senate appear to have been thwarted in Iowa.