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Sometimes certain things need to be said. And sometimes they’ll come across as harsh or personal. But they still need to be said.

I’ve been inundated with Iowans complaining about Sen. Joni Ernst’s betrayal and her vote for the DisRespect for Marriage Act. A number of them have vowed not to support her again. A number of them have said we need to orchestrate a primary. A number of them have said she must not be re-elected.

But you want to know an inconvenient truth?

Many of these same Iowans just voted for Ashley Hinson, Mariannette Miller-Meeks or Zach Nunn — all of whom voted for the same DisRespect for Marriage Act or said they would have voted for it.

Do you want another bonus inconvenient truth?

Many of these same Iowans just voted for Sen. Chuck Grassley, who voted in support of the Biden Infrastructure bill. And, I looked back at the posts on that issue when it was “hot.” Sure enough, many of the comments were about how people would never vote for Grassley again.

Do you want a reaaaalllllly inconvenient truth?

Chuck Grassley, who Iowans just re-elected, has voted with the Joe Biden agenda more often than Ernst. Much more often. Like it isn’t-even-close more often.

Ernst’s Biden score is 33.9 percent.

Grassley’s Biden score is, pause for dramatic effect…50 percent.

Half the time Grassley is supporting the Biden agenda. Ernst is supporting it one-third of the time.

And Iowans just re-elected Grassley. By double digits.

But sure. When Chuck Grassley voted to certify Joe Biden’s “win,” a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck. When Chuck Grassley blamed Donald Trump for Jan. 6 — a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck. When Chuck Grassley said he was looking forward to Joe Biden’s agenda, a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck.

When Chuck Grassley said if the federal government institutes a COVID vaccine mandate to fly, unvaccinated Americans would have to find another way to travel — a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck. When Chuck Grassley voted for the Biden Infrastructure bill — a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck. When Chuck Grassley implored the House to pass the Biden Infrastructure bill saying that Joe Biden “needs a win,” — a lot of Iowa Republicans said they were done with Chuck.

Despite his failing Liberty Score. Despite his support of Mayor Pete for Transportation Secretary. Despite his support of Merrick Garland for Attorney General. Despite voting to send billions of dollars to Ukraine. Despite surrendering on the border wall.

Despite it all, here we are, less than two weeks removed from an election where Grassley’s anti-conservative record meant nothing to Iowa Republicans, wondering how and why Ernst can feel so comfortable in her Senate seat that her base will not turn on her for a vote in 2022 when she’s not up for re-election until 2026.

Keep in mind, Hinson, Miller-Meeks and Nunn all publicly supported the same exact bill Ernst voted for. And they did it a few months before their election — not four years before it.

And guess what, Iowa Republicans didn’t care when it mattered most. They showed up and voted red.

The Republican Party of Iowa’s platform has consistently opposed homosexual marriage and supported traditional marriage. I can’t find the newest version of the platform online, but here is what a previous version said:

We believe that traditional, two-parent (one male and one female), marriage-based families are the foundation to a stable, enduring, and healthy civilization. Therefore, public policy must always be pro-family in nature, encouraging marital and family commitment, and supportive of the parental rights and responsibilities.

We encourage the repeal of any laws allowing any marriage that is not between one natural man and one natural woman.

We support “Conscience Clause” legislation so that no person, business, or organization can be penalized for its exercise of religious freedom by not providing services that violates their religious beliefs.

The DisRespect for Marriage Act does none of that. In fact, it does the opposite of that. And 66 percent of Iowa Republicans in Congress sided with it and against the platform. Sixty-six percent. Technically, 66.6 percent.

So, let’s really reflect — why would Joni Ernst support the DisRespect for Marriage Act? Because it appears Iowa Republican voters don’t care.

After all, they re-elected Miller-Meeks months after she voted for it.

They re-elected Hinson months after she voted for it.

They elected Nunn months after he declared he would have voted for it.

There were no consequences. Why would Ernst expect to be held to a different standard in four years than they were in a mere matter of months?

Easy answer: She shouldn’t.

In fact, if we’re being honest, what has happened in recent history to suggest that when push comes to shove, and Iowans are voting in 2026 and it’s Joni Ernst vs. Generic Democrat, that Iowans will not “hold their nose” and fill in Ernst’s circle?

Another easy answer: Nothing.

It seems Iowa’s Republican base doesn’t put much stock into its platform. At least it doesn’t expect its legislators to uphold it. Or legislate based upon it.

It seems we’re almost all bark and practically zero bite.

Because, you know, we haaaaaave to vote Republican to “save our country” — or something.

Or perhaps it is that we have to vote Republican so instead of being stabbed from the front, where we have to see it coming, we instead prefer being stabbed in the back.

Because, hey, at least it isn’t the Democrats driving the knife in! 

Author: Jacob Hall


  1. If any voter had been paying attention they would know everything you pointed out. The problem is, voting in iowa is NOT clean. If anyone again was reading the research they would know that. Carlin ran against GRASSLEY, if they know about algorithms and voting machines they would know that Carlin DID NOT get just 25% of the primary vote. As long as the Iowa establishment supports their own candidates and we continue to have illegal elections, there is very little, outside of prayer and fasting, (and there is no voice that is heralding that truth,) that will change voter corruption in iowa and the USA. And the Ernsts and GRASSLEYs and establishment candidates will continue to hold office.

  2. Jacob you are right about all of this , of course , but consider a few additional points , since your readership is mostly Carlin primary voters anyhow .

    Iowa had the most consistent and principled Christian conservative representative in the house in the person of Representative Steve King . His political career was not ended by any policy position he advocated for in Washington D.C. , but by underhanded machinations of the RPI party bosses back home and their willing cooperation in depriving the state from authentic Christian conservative representation in DC with the worst national actors in the RNC , DNC, and associated press. How could we , as a grassroots Republican base , expect our house delegation to not be intimidated into capitulating to the house democrats on every cultural issue , when they are all serving in the shadow of the whole “Steve King was kicked off all of his committees by Kevin McCarthy for speaking the truth and our state party punished him for it” debacle which remains unresolved? Rebuilding the strength of our Republican Party of Iowa between now and the next elections means purging RPI leadership of bad actors , and the Steve King episode has given us all a great litmus test here at home for seeing where “our people” fall on the Good Republican Bad Republican spectrum.

    Our house candidates were a month away from the general election when their votes came down on the respect for marriage act. They could perhaps be forgiven for voting wrong after being pushed into a “doomed if you do , doomed if you don’t” vote on a bill which was explicitly designed by the house democrats in control of the chamber to hurt Republicans in the midterms , and the Republican base for not punishing them for that with a month left in campaign season.

    What is Joni’s excuse other than continually aligning herself with McConnell , and Romney , and Murkowski , and the worst republicans in the senate? And it’s not just this , the red flag gun stuff , supporting Liz Cheney. Much more.

    If Republicans are going to be given a mandate and the task of governing the state of Iowa for the foreseeable future. We need to get our own house (no pun intended) in order and conduct our own party affairs in an absolutely unimpeachable way in commitment to the esteemable ideals we have set out in our platform so the Iowa dems have absolutely nothing to gripe about , ever again. For these reasons , Joni’s gotta go and the primary should start now , so whoever the challenger is stands a better chance than Carlin.

    • McConnell voted against the Respect for Marriage Act. So she didn’t even align with him on this! You are right about Rep. Steve King.

      Your final paragraph is well stated too! Thanks for contributing to the discussion!

  3. Terrific article. Brought us all up to speed on the realities of the Republican Party. I have long worked to advance the platform. My reward was to be attacked by my own party leaders.

  4. I just read your Opinion on Sen. Ernest’s vote. How forgetful we are. How enlightening your fact-base writing is. I plan to begin reading more from you. The Iowa Standard appears to be rare, honest journalism. You’ve got my vote and support.

  5. She has always been an Establishment Republican. We had much better, more Conservative people running against her when she was elected, Conservatives like Sam Clovis.

    She needs to go in favor of a true Conservative.


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