Five Republican Senate Candidates Hold First Debate

JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) - The five Republicans seeking Iowa's U.S. Senate nomination have met to debate at Iowa Public Television's studios near Des Moines.

College professor Sam Clovis of Sioux City, state Sen. Joni Ernst of Red Oak, retired business executive Mark Jacobs of West Des Moines, businessman Scott Schaben of Urbandale, and former U.S. attorney Matt Whitaker of Clive all participated in Thursday night's 90-minute live broadcast.

It's the first statewide televised debate for the candidates, who are vying to win 35 percent of the vote in the June 3 primary. If no candidate meets the threshold, a party convention will decide the nomination.

The Republican nominee will face U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley of Waterloo, the only Democrat seeking the seat held by retiring five-term Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin.
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