Greens launch $1 million campaign against Ernst in Iowa

Sierra Club Independent Action launched a $1 million advertising campaign Tuesday as a final push to against Republican Iowa Senate candidate Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstFormer Iowa Gov. Vilsack won't challenge Ernst for Senate in 2020 Push for paid family leave heats up ahead of 2020 Ivanka Trump to meet with GOP senators to discuss paid family leave legislation MORE.

The television ad focuses on two of Ernst’s statements that her opponent Rep. Bruce BraleyBruce Lowell BraleyOPINION | Tax reform, not Trump-McConnell feuds, will make 2018 a win for GOP Ten years later, House Dems reunite and look forward Trump: Ernst wanted 'more seasoning' before entertaining VP offer MORE (D) and others on the left have used against her in the campaign: that she wants to abolish the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and potentially privatize Social Security.


“We’ve never seen anything like this,” a woman in the ad says. “Almost $3 million in ads for Joni Ernst, backed by two billionaires who don’t even live in Iowa. She’s fighting for their agenda.”

The two billionaires are brothers Charles and David Koch, who fund groups that have run ads against Braley.

“They’re buying a lot of ads. But they can’t buy our votes,” the woman declares.

The ad also uses recordings of Ernst saying “let’s shut down the federal EPA” and “I have talked about privatizing Social Security as an option.”

“Big polluting billionaires like the Koch brothers are putting their money on Joni Ernst because she's putting their agenda to gut clean air and water protections and privatize social security at the top of her platform,” Pam Mackey Taylor, a Sierra Club volunteer from Iowa, said in a statement.

The group’s campaign affiliate is running the ad through Oct. 15 in the major markets in Iowa as a final push in the weeks before the Nov. 4 election.

The ad buy follows a $1 million effort the Sierra Club, League of Conservation Voters and Environmental Defense Action Fund launched in June to attack Ernst.