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i9 Fact Checker: Ernst attack on coastal donations true but hypocritical

Published: Sep. 30, 2020 at 7:55 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Republican Sen. Joni Ernst attacked Democratic challenger Theresa Greenfield multiple times for taking a large number of donations from California and New York. But, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, the Republican senator received more than $479,000 from New York and more than $252,000 from Los Angeles.

Ernst brought up Greenfield’s ties to donors while discussing Iowa’s minimum wage.

“But overall I do believe that this should be a state-based issue as well because while Theresa Greenfield is being backed by funders in California and New York,” Ernst said. "What is right for California and New York may not be right for the economy in the state of Iowa.

Ernst brought up her donors from New York and California again while discussing her views on abortion.

“I think that the views that are being taken by Theresa Greenfield and those that are backing her from the coasts, from California and New York,” Ernst said. “It’s inappropriate and not acceptable to most Iowa voters.”

Greenfield sees a lot of money from out-of-state. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Greenfield sees around 84% of all her contributions from people outside Iowa. According to the nonpartisan and nonprofit group, the top five metro areas her contributions were: New York, Des Moines, Washington, D.C., San Fransisco and Los Angeles.

These are the top five locations where Greenfield has received contributions from, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
These are the top five locations where Greenfield has received contributions from, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.(Ethan Stein)

Ernst’s top five metro areas, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, are almost completely the same locations with the exception of switching out San Fransisco for West Palm Beach.

These are the top five locations where Sen. Ernst has received contributions from, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
These are the top five locations where Sen. Ernst has received contributions from, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.(Ethan Stein)

The website breaks those numbers down to zip codes as well and although locations in central Iowa are the top location for both candidates, many other locations are located out of state.

So it’s hypocritical for Ernst to call out Greenfield for taking out of state donations - but it is nonetheless accurate, which is why it gets an 'A'.

Copyright 2020 KCRG. All rights reserved.

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