- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 16, 2014

Two ads attacking Iowa State Sen. Joni Ernst for her pro-life views were launched Thursday, hours before she was scheduled to participate in a final debate with her Democratic rival.

The ad from NARAL Pro-Choice America reminded Iowans that Mrs. Ernst, a Republican, is supported by the Susan B. Anthony List — which also supported “people like Todd Akin, who said women’s bodies could prevent pregnancies during ‘legitimate rape.’”

The SBA List also supported “Richard Mourdock, who said pregnancy from rape is ‘something God intended to happen,’” said the 60-second ad. Mr. Akin and Mr. Mourdock were 2012 Senate candidates in Missouri and Indiana, respectively.

A second ad, from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC), said Mrs. Ernst’s support for life-begins-at-conception measures means she would outlaw all abortions, even in cases of rape or incest.

A comment on either ad was not immediately available from the Ernst campaign Thursday.

Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the SBA List, said the NARAL ad was “bizarre” and “silly,” and showed that NARAL was operating from “a very weak place.”

Mrs. Ernst is in a tight race with Democrat Rep. Bruce Braley to fill the seat held for decades by retiring Democrat Sen. Tom Harkin. The candidates hold their last debate Thursday in Sioux City.

According to Real Clear Politics, neither candidate has reached 50 percent support yet, but Mrs. Ernst has bested Mr. Braley by single digits in five of the last six polls.

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