GOP Senator Joni Ernst is not polling well as November inches closer. This has prompted Vice President Mike Pence to make his way to Iowa for the second time in six weeks to help the desperate Republican.
According to The Gazette, the visit will come Tuesday where Pence will also lunch with Gov. Kim Reynolds and visit a Winnebago factory.
According to the Des Moines Register, Ernst is falling behind of Democratic challenger Theresa Greenfield.
“According to the poll, 46 percent of likely voters say they would back [Democrat Theresa] Greenfield if the election were held today, and 43 percent say they would back Ernst,” the Register reported over the weekend.
In April, Ernst claimed that everything in Iowa was going well with respect to COVID-19.
“Iowa has fared pretty well. We are a very rural state, but some of the restrictions that have been put in place by our governor have worked quite well,” Ernst said during the radio interview. “We are of course saddened by the deaths that we have had, but we have not been hit nearly as hard as some of the more metro areas or coastal areas. We have had a couple of recent outbreaks at some of our meat processing facilities — because they are essential workers they continue going into work and being with each other every day — but overall Iowa has done very well through the pandemic.”
But according to a Des Moines Register report from May, farmers in the area do not agree with Ernst.
“The coronavirus has caused an agricultural tsunami that’s ripped through Iowa and the nation. Markets have been disrupted as schools, restaurants and hotels have shuttered, and meatpacking plants are slowing or closing as about 10,500 workers — including 1,650 in Iowa — have tested positive for COVID-19,” said the report.
“At the current prices, you’re losing money everywhere,” said Iowa Soybean Association board president Tim Bardole.
At the same time, corn prices have dropped about 15 percent since March when states began shutting down to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Soybeans have fallen 8 percent, hog prices are down by 33 percent and cattle has dropped 21 percent.
And this was after farmers were already impacted by Donald Trump’s trade war, where job growth stalled after Dec. 2016 “as sectors of manufacturing and agriculture the region relies on have taken hits due to Trump’s trade war,” according to The Guardian.
“Looking around the city of Dubuque, our new jobs are in fast food,” said Louie Meier, who worked at the John Deere factory for years. “We lost a manufacturing plant; Flexsteel shut down this year; and some of our other manufacturing plants that are non-union, those workers haven’t been getting raises in years. There are lots of opportunities to get work in Dubuque if you can survive on $12 an hour. Going from making over $20 an hour to making $12 an hour, it’s putting a lot of Iowans in precarious situations.”
Ernst isn’t the only one struggling in Iowa. Trump, who defeated Hillary Clinton by 10 points in 2016, is now neck and neck with his opponent former Vice President Joe Biden.