Government

Ashley Hinson promises 'dose of Iowa common sense' in first ad of campaign

Republican nominee for Congress in Iowa's First District, Ashley Hinson, addresses members of the press during a visit t
Republican nominee for Congress in Iowa’s First District, Ashley Hinson, addresses members of the press during a visit to the HACAP Food Reservoir in Hiawatha on Tuesday, July 28, 2020. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

DES MOINES — Iowa 1st U.S. House District Republican challenger Ashley Hinson is launching her first television ad of the campaign today, promising to take “a dose of Iowa common sense” to Washington.

Hinson, a two-term state representative from Marion, is running against freshman U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer in a race that analysts predict will be one of the most competitive House races this fall.

Hinson’s first television ad, “Watch It,” will air in the Cedar Rapids market on broadcast. It also will be seen on cable in the Rochester, Des Moines and Cedar Rapids markets while streaming across the 20-county 1st District, which includes Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Cedar Falls and Dubuque.

In the 30-second ad, Hinson, a former morning news anchor, says she is running to end the chaos and dysfunction in Washington on both sides of the aisle.

“For years I reported the news,” Hinson says. “Today, I can’t even let my kids watch it. Washington politicians yelling, attacks on police, socialists tearing down anyone and anything they disagree with.

“America has challenges, but we are still the greatest country in the world, and it’s not even close. America is worth fighting for.”

Republicans hope to win back the 1st District seat that Finkenauer captured in the Democratic wave of 2018.

Hinson has a record of winning tight elections. In 2018, she held a swing district to help retain the Iowa House majority and outperformed the Republican ticket by 5 to 8 percentage points across House 67, the heart of the 1st District. She carried nine of 13 precincts despite Democratic outside groups outspending Republican outside groups.

The National Republican Congressional Committee has Hinson in its highest tier of the “Young Gun Program,” based on its assessment of her election prospects.

Ratings for the race range from “tossup” to “tilts Democrat.” The Washington Post recently called Finkenauer the seventh-most-vulnerable House Democrat.

Although Finkenauer has been a prolific fundraiser, Hinson outraised the incumbent in the second quarter.

However, the Post noted that polling indicates the presidential race and the U.S. Senate race appear to be very competitive in ways that could help Finkenauer.

The Aug. 1 active voter registration numbers show 179,901 Democrats, 150,049 Republicans and 168,992 other.

A recent Rasmussen Reports national poll found only 18 percent of likely voters believe Congress is doing a good job and only 35 percent believe their representative deserves re-election.

Comments: (319) 398-8375; james.lynch@thegazette.com

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