Every caucus year revives the old cliche that Iowans are the most politically educated voters in the country. We know fact from fiction, and anyone who tries to play us for fools will get their just deserts.
One month ago, despite everything she was being told in briefings in Washington, Sen. Joni Ernst told Iowans that coronavirus was being spun by Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer to “stir up panic.” Today — the US leads the world in COVID-19 cases, and thousands of Iowans could lose their lives in this crisis.
Over 100,000 Iowans have filed for unemployment, and our hospitals have nowhere close to adequate levels of equipment to protect our health care workers and treat those affected.
So what has Sen. Ernst done? As Congress worked to pass relief packages, she opposed paid family leave, expanded unemployment benefits, and $55 billion in new aid for hospitals.
And then — she tried to play us for fools. Sen. Ernst joined Gov. Kim Reynolds’ news conference and claimed credit for passing those relief measures, pretending like we wouldn’t notice.
We need honest leadership more than ever, and Sen. Ernst has proved we cannot trust her in this midst of this pandemic. Thankfully, we can give Ernst her just deserts and elect a new senator who will fight for — and be truthful to — Iowans.