Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, faces a new challenger to her seat in retired Navy Adm. Michael Franken of Sioux Center, who released a video announcing his intent to run for the Democratic nomination on Monday.
"I was trained to not bow to political pressure and to do what's right," Franken, who spent almost 40 years in service, says in the video that he released to the Des Moines Register. He notes that he will bring this training to Washington, if elected.
"Republicans are afraid to ever stand up to Donald Trump," he adds. "And D.C. Democrats aren't bold enough to confront the climate crisis, the health care industry and Wall Street. ... Join me, because now, more than ever, Iowans need a senator who will go against the grain in Washington to do what's right for Iowa."
Although Franken does not say Ernst’s name in the video, it does briefly show a picture of her next to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and he told the Register in an interview that although the senator has made “vacuous” promises, his “concern is representing Iowa and being the best senator I can be for this state and for the nation, with a focus to the next generation.”
"My emphasis is to convince Iowa that the Democratic Party represents Iowans," Franken said. "We represent national security. We represent health security, and fair play, and non-special interests, and corporate fair play and a future that’s not belaboring our children with the deficit. So I will have a lot of messages, but the first thing I’d like to do is shake a lot of hands and let people get to know me."
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