Democratic Iowa Senate candidate Bruce Braley's latest ad against GOP opponent Joni Ernst was not only subtly sexist, but also factually inaccurate, according to an ABC affiliate in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Braley accused Ernst of having “never sponsored a bill to cut pork,” “never wrote one measure to slash spending” and backed measures that “actually increased spending.”
But actually, Ernst sponsored four bills that would lead to spending cuts by removing government waste, according to ABC affiliate KCRG:
Sen. Ernst sponsored SF105 in 2011, requiring the Department of Transportation to conduct a cost-benefit analysis before building any new rest areas. That same year, Sen. Ernst also proposed a state hiring freeze (SF223). We also found proposals from Sen. Ernst to require drug testing for welfare recipients (SF90) and to check social security documents to prevent illegal immigrants from getting state aid (SF104), both intended to cut waste from those programs.
Of course, the Braley campaign said those bills didn’t count, and even claimed they would end up costing taxpayers more.
But KCRG responded by saying that bills to directly cut spending are rare and usually take place during budget negotiations. It notes that Ernst routinely voted against Democratic spending bills, but didn’t propose any amendments or bills that would directly cut funding.
And Braley’s claim about Ernst proposing bills to increase spending? Well, he’s right about that, however the bills Ernst sponsored are hardly things that Braley would object.
Ernst sponsored a bill to establish a preschool grant program. Does Braley object to that? Probably not, considering he voted for Head Start funding.
Ernst also sponsored a bill to increase tax credits for veterans. Does Braley object to that? Probably not, considering he introduced a bill that would provide a payroll tax exemption to companies that hired unemployed veterans.
Oh, and Ernst introduced a bill in 2012 to provide funding for roads in critical need of repair. Does Braley object to that? Probably not, considering he helped secure millions of dollars for Iowa's damaged roads back in 2008.
KCRG rated Braley’s ad “mostly false.” I would add that what wasn’t outright false was hypocritical and misleading.