Press Releases

Coalition Launches Nearly $1 Million Effort to Defeat Joni Ernst

Jun 24, 2014

LCV TV ad kicks off campaign, highlighting why extremists like Sarah Palin & the Koch Brothers support Ernst 

**View the ad*

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A coalition of environmental groups including the League of Conservation Voters, Sierra Club and Environmental Defense Action Fund today announced a new nearly $1 million effort to defeat Joni Ernst and elect Bruce Braley to the U.S. Senate in November. To kick off the coalition effort, LCV is launching a television ad highlighting extremists like Sarah Palin and the Koch Brothers are supporting Ernst so she can enact their extreme agenda. The ad, “Promises,” starts running this week in the Cedar Rapids and Des Moines media markets.

“Extremists like Sarah Palin and the Koch Brothers are backing Joni Ernst because they know she would do their bidding in Washington. Her plan to abolish the EPA and threaten our air and water is just too extreme for Iowa,” said Gene Karpinski, President of the League of Conservation Voters

The ad highlights how Ernst’s extreme agenda is far outside of the mainstream and out-of-step with Iowa voters. Ernst has pledged to give polluters a pass by shutting down the Environmental Protection Agency, which is responsible for protecting public health by enforcing bedrock environmental laws like the Clean Air Act. She’s also pledged to eliminate the Department of Education, which helps hundreds of thousands of Iowa students attend college each year through the federal Pell grant program.

“Joni Ernst’s plan to gut the safeguards that keep toxics out of our air and water is music to the ears of big polluters and just plain dangerous for everyone else,” said Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club. “The Koch Brothers have made their choice for Senate, but Iowa voters deserve to hear the full story.”

“Nothing is more important than protecting our children’s health,” said Elizabeth Thompson, President of Environmental Defense Action Fund. “The Ernst plan for shutting down the Environmental Protection Agency would be a disaster for families across America.”

The ad also makes it clear that an Ernst victory would be a win for extremists like Sarah Palin and the Koch Brothers, who are supporting her in this race because they know she’ll do their bidding in Washington. At a rally for Ernst, Palin said that, “we’re going to be hiring her, expecting her to fulfill campaign promises,” and Ernst has called Palin “an inspiration.” Ernst has also attended a Koch Brothers seminar and received nearly $25,000 in campaign contributions from the Koch Brothers’ network of political donors, while the Koch Brothers’ front group Americans for Prosperity has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on attack ads against Bruce Braley. Backup for the ad is available here

Unlike Ernst, Bruce Braley has stood up to corporate polluters and advocated for commonsense policies to protect our air and water. He’s earned an 89% on LCV’s 2013 National Environmental Scorecard and a lifetime score of 88%. The non-partisan Scorecard is the nationally accepted yardstick used to rate members of Congress on environmental and clean energy issues. For more information, visit


Paid for by the League of Conservation Voters,, Environmental Defense Action Fund,, and The Sierra Club Political Committee,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.