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Senator Ernst campaign facing criticism after fundraising email highlighting Supreme Court vacancy sent out shortly after Justice Ginsburg’s death announced

Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, speaks during a news conference with Senate Republicans, Wednesday,...
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, speaks during a news conference with Senate Republicans, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington.(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Published: Sep. 18, 2020 at 8:20 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - With 45 days until Election Day, the vacancy on the United States Supreme Court following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is already becoming a key campaign issue just hours after her death was announced.

Less than an hour after the death of Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was announced Friday evening, Senator Joni Ernst’s re-election campaign sent out a fundraising email highlighting the vacancy on the court.

O. Kay Henderson of Radio Iowa reports an email from the campaign was received at 7:08 p.m. saying “Emergency 5X matching has been activated for ALL donations made to protect the White House, keep the Senate majority in Republican hands and ensure the next Supreme Court nominee is selected by President Trump!”

News of Justice Ginsburg’s death broke shortly after 6:15 p.m. Friday Iowa time.

The Ernst campaign was heavily criticized on social media for sending out the fundraising email. The campaign sent the following statement to KCRG-TV9 Friday night:

“This email never should have gone out. Though I never saw it, it was sent out under my name and I take responsibility for it. Tonight, my prayers are with the family of Justice Ginsburg.”

Senator Joni Ernst's campaign

Senator Ernst’s official senate office released the following statement after 7:30 p.m. Friday:

Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a force to be reckoned with. She was an iconic figure who blazed a trail for working moms, graciously balancing her professional life and family. Justice Ginsburg held deep, philosophical views of the world while maintaining genuine friendships that were blind to politics. My heart is with Justice Ginsburg’s children – Jane and James — their entire family, and the loved ones she leaves behind. May she rest in peace.

U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA)

Ernst is in a close re-election race against democrat Theresa Greenfield.

Greenfield released the following statement shortly after 7 p.m. Friday:

I’m at a loss. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a tireless champion for civil rights and equality, an inspiration, and an icon. Let’s work hard every day to honor her memory

U.S. Senate Candidate Theresa Greenfield

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