United States Senate election in Iowa, 2014

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United States Senate election in Iowa, 2014

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  Joni Ernst crop.jpg Bruce Braley official 110th Congress photo portrait.jpg
Nominee Joni Ernst Bruce Braley
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 588,575 494,370
Percentage 52.1% 43.8%

Iowa Senatorial Election Results by County, 2014.svg
County results
Ernst:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%      70–80%      80–90%
Braley:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%

U.S. Senator before election

Tom Harkin
Democratic

Elected U.S. Senator

Joni Ernst
Republican

The 2014 United States Senate election in Iowa was held on November 4, 2014. Incumbent Democratic Senator Tom Harkin did not run for reelection to a sixth term in office.[1]

U.S. Representative Bruce Braley was unopposed for the Democratic nomination; the Republicans nominated State Senator Joni Ernst in a June 3 primary election.[2] Douglas Butzier, who was the Libertarian nominee, died on October 14 in a single engine plane crash near Key West, Iowa. He was the pilot and the only person aboard the plane.[3][4][5][6] He still appeared on the ballot, alongside Independents Bob Quast, Ruth Smith and Rick Stewart.

Democratic primary[edit]

Bruce Braley ultimately faced no opposition in his primary campaign and became the Democratic nominee on June 3, 2014.[7]

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

Withdrew[edit]

  • Bob Quast, businessman (running as an Independent)[9]

Declined[edit]

Endorsements[edit]

Bruce Braley

Federal Politicians

Statewide Politicians

State Legislators

Polling[edit]

Results[edit]

Democratic primary results[21]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Bruce Braley 62,623 99.2%
Democratic Write-ins 504 0.8%
Total votes 63,127 100.0%

Republican primary[edit]

The Republican primary was held on June 3, 2014. If no candidate won more than 35% of the vote, the nominee would have been chosen at a statewide convention. It would have been only the second time in 50 years that a convention picked a nominee and the first time since 2002, when then-State Senator Steve King won a convention held in Iowa's 5th congressional district to decide the Republican nominee for Congress. Having the nominee chosen by a convention led to fears that the increasingly powerful Ron Paul faction of the state party, led by Party Chairman A. J. Spiker, could have nominated an unelectable candidate.[22][23]

The convention was scheduled to be held on June 14 but was then moved to July 12. Republican leaders, including Governor Terry Branstad and U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley, as well as four of the candidates for the nomination, criticized the move. Candidates Sam Clovis, Joni Ernst, Matthew Whitaker and David Young signed a letter to the Republican Party of Iowa asking them to move the convention date back, saying that "Essentially gifting [Bruce] Braley an additional 30 days to campaign in a vacuum, while reducing our nominee's time to raise funds and campaign as the general election candidate by an entire month – only serves to strengthen Braley’s viability". Spiker responded that the move was necessary to accommodate the 27-day period that the Iowa Secretary of State's office requires to certify the results of the primary.[24] Spiker reiterated his position in September 2013, rejecting calls for a vote by the central committee to move the convention date. He said that nominating a candidate before the primary had been certified would break state law, "which outlines that a ballot vacancy does not exist until the canvass is completed and certified."[25]

Secretary of State Matt Schultz was highly critical of Spiker, saying that "no political party should use the excuse of the final date of the statewide canvass to determine the date of its special nominating convention. Furthermore, to state that it is necessary to hold a special nominating convention after the conclusion of the state canvass is not only misleading, it is false."[26] Following efforts by members of the central committee to call a special meeting to move the date back to June, Spiker agreed and a meeting was held on September 23.[27] The central committee voted 16-1 to move the convention date back to June 14.[28] Statewide Republican leaders and activists and members of the National Republican Senatorial Committee believe that the real reason for the attempt to delay the convention was to give the Ron Paul faction time to organize an insurgent effort to push through a candidate they support, which could have even be Spiker himself or State Party Co-chair David Fischer.[23] The infighting has been traced back to the failure of the NRSC and allies of Governor Branstad and Senator Grassley to recruit a "top-tier" candidate for the race.[23]

Ernst received widespread attention for a campaign ad she released in March 2014 where she employed a tongue-in-cheek comparison between her experience castrating pigs and her ability to cut "pork" in Congress.[29][30] Many found the ad to be humorous[31][32] and it was spoofed by late-night comedians including Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert,[33][34] while some found it to be in bad taste.[35][36] Before the ad aired, Ernst had struggled in fundraising,[37][38] and two polls of the Republican primary taken in February 2014 had shown her in second place, several points behind opponent Mark Jacobs.[39][40] After it aired, a Suffolk University poll in early April showed her with a narrow lead and a Loras College poll showed her essentially tied with Jacobs.[36][41][42][43] By May, she was being described by the media as the "strong front-runner".[44]

In May 2014, Roll Call reported that the Republican primary campaign had become a proxy for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, with Mitt Romney and Marco Rubio supporting Ernst, Rick Perry endorsing Whitaker and Rick Santorum backing Clovis.[45] Jacobs, who had no such high-profile endorsements, ran as the "outsider".[46]

Ultimately, Ernst won the primary with 56% of the vote, negating the need for a convention.

Candidates[edit]

Declared[edit]

Withdrew[edit]

Declined[edit]

Endorsements[edit]

Sam Clovis
Individuals
Organizations
Joni Ernst

National Figures

Statewide Politicians

State Legislators

Local Officials

Organizations

Mark Jacobs
Individuals
Matt Whitaker

Polling[edit]

Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Sam
Clovis
Joni
Ernst
Mark
Jacobs
Paul
Lunde
Scott
Schaben
Matt
Whitaker
Other Undecided
Hill Research Consultants* February 12–13, 2014 300 ± 4% 6% 11% 22% 8% 3% 50%
Public Policy Polling February 20–23, 2014 283 ± 5.8% 8% 13% 20% 3% 3% 11% 42%
Suffolk University April 3–8, 2014 224 ± 6.55% 6.7% 25% 22.77% 1.34% 4.02% 40.18%
Loras College April 7–8, 2014 600 ± 4% 7.3% 18.1% 18.8% 3.5% 4% 48.2%
The Polling Company April 13–14, 2014 223 ± 4% 5.8% 22.5% 20.4% 0.4% 2.1% 6.7% 42.1%
Harper Polling^ April 30 – May 1, 2014 500 ± 4.38% 14% 33% 23% 1% 3% 26%
Loras College May 12–13, 2014 600 ± 4% 9.5% 30.8% 19.3% 2.3% 7.3% 30.7%
Public Policy Polling May 15–19, 2014 303 ± ? 14% 34% 18% 2% 1% 6% 26%
Des Moines Register May 27–30, 2014 400 ± 4.9% 11% 36% 18% 2% 13% 16%
  • ^ Internal poll for Joni Ernst campaign
  • * Internal poll for Mark Jacobs campaign

Results[edit]

Republican primary results[21]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Joni Ernst 88,692 56.12%
Republican Sam Clovis 28,434 17.99%
Republican Mark Jacobs 26,582 16.82%
Republican Matthew Whitaker 11,909 7.54%
Republican Scott Schaben 2,270 1.44%
Republican Write-ins 144 0.09%
Total votes 158,031 100.00%

General election[edit]

Debates[edit]

On August 29, Ernst and Braley announced their agreement to hold three televised debates in Davenport, Des Moines, and Sioux City, the first debate on September 28, the second on October 11, and the last on October 16.[114]

Fundraising[edit]

Candidate Raised Spent Cash on Hand
Bruce Braley (D) $9,918,362 $10,069,945 $707,302
Joni Ernst (R) $9,206,690 $7,660,912 $2,244,366

Polling[edit]

Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Bruce
Braley (D)
Joni
Ernst (R)
Other Undecided
Public Policy Polling November 1–3, 2014 1,265 ± 2.8% 45% 48% 2%[115] 5%
46% 49% 5%
Quinnipiac University October 28 – November 2, 2014 778 ± 3.5% 47% 47% 2% 4%
Public Policy Polling October 30–31, 2014 617 ± ? 47% 48% 5%
Iowa Poll October 28–31, 2014 701 ± 3.7% 44% 51% 1% 4%
YouGov October 25–31, 2014 1,112 ± 4.4% 43% 42% 3% 13%
Fox News October 28–30, 2014 911 ± 3% 44% 45% 4% 8%
Rasmussen Reports October 28–30, 2014 990 ± 3% 47% 48% 3% 3%
CNN/ORC October 27–30, 2014 647 LV ± 4% 47% 49% 4%
887 RV ± 3.5% 49% 43% 7%
Reuters/Ipsos October 23–29, 2014 1,129 ± 3.3% 45% 45% 4% 7%
Quinnipiac October 22–27, 2014 817 ± 3.4% 45% 49% 2% 5%
Loras College October 21–24, 2014 1,121 ± 2.93% 45.3% 44.2% 2.3% 8.2%
CBS News/NYT/YouGov October 16–23, 2014 2,322 ± 3% 44% 44% 1% 11%
NBC News/Marist October 18–22, 2014 772 LV ± 3.5% 46% 49% 1% 4%
1,052 RV ± 3% 46% 46% 2% 6%
Gravis Marketing October 20–21, 2014 964 ± 3% 43% 49% 8%
Monmouth University October 18–21, 2014 423 ± 4.8% 46% 47% 5% 2%
Quinnipiac University October 15–21, 2014 964 ± 3.2% 46% 48% 3% 4%
Public Policy Polling October 15–16, 2014 714 ± ?% 48% 47% 5%
Suffolk University October 11–14, 2014 500 ± 4.4% 43.2% 47% 2.4%[116] 7.4%
Quinnipiac University October 8–13, 2014 967 ± 3.2% 45% 47% 3% 5%
Rasmussen Reports October 8–10, 2014 957 ± 3% 45% 48% 1% 5%
Iowa Poll October 3–8, 2014 1,000 ± 3.1% 46% 47% 3% 4%
Morey Group October 4–7, 2014 1,000 ± 3.1% 39.3% 37.9% 1.6% 21.2%
Magellan October 3, 2014 1,299 ± 2.8% 40.8% 50% 9.2%
Loras College October 1–3, 2014 600 ± 4% 42.1% 42.4% 3.7% 11.8%
NBC News/Marist September 27 – October 1, 2014 778 LV ± 3.5% 44% 46% 1% 9%
1,093 RV ± 3% 45% 44% 1% 11%
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner September 25 – October 1, 2014 1,000 ± 2.09% 44% 45% 11%
CBS News/NYT/YouGov September 20 – October 1, 2014 2,359 ± 2% 44% 43% 1% 12%
Gravis Marketing September 29–30, 2014 522 ± 4% 41% 50% 10%
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner September 25–30, 2014 800 ± 3.46% 47% 46% 7%
Public Policy Polling September 25–28, 2014 1,192 ± 2.8% 42% 44% 4%[117] 10%
43% 45% 12%
Harstad Research September 21–25, 2014 809 ± ? 42% 42% 16%
Iowa Poll September 21–24, 2014 546 ± 4.2% 38% 44% 6%[118] 12%
Rasmussen Reports September 17–18, 2014 750 ± 4% 43% 43% 4% 14%
Fox News September 14–16, 2014 600 ± 4% 41% 41% 6% 12%
Quinnipiac University September 10–15, 2014 1,167 ± 2.9% 44% 50% 1% 4%
CNN/ORC September 8–10, 2014 608 LV ± 4% 49% 48% 1% 2%
904 RV ± 3.5% 50% 42% 7%
Loras College September 2–5, 2014 1,200 ± 2.82% 45.3% 40.5% 14.2%
CBS News/NYT/YouGov August 18 – September 2, 2014 1,764 ± 3% 44% 42% 2% 13%
Public Policy Polling August 28–30, 2014 816 ± 3.4% 43% 45% 12%
Suffolk August 23–26, 2014 500 ± 4% 40.2% 40% 4.8%[119] 15%
Public Policy Polling August 22–24, 2014 915 ± 3.2% 41% 40% 5%[120] 14%
42% 42% 16%
Rasmussen Reports August 11–12, 2014 750 ± 4% 43% 43% 6% 8%
CBS News/NYT/YouGov July 5–24, 2014 2,056 ± 2.7% 45% 46% 2% 8%
Gravis Marketing July 17–18, 2014 1,179 ± 3% 44% 43% 13%
NBC News/Marist July 7–13, 2014 1,599 ± 2.5% 43% 43% 1% 14%
Quinnipiac University June 12–16, 2014 1,277 ± 2.7% 44% 40% 16%
Vox Populi Polling June 4–5, 2014 665 ± 3.8% 44% 49% 7%
Loras College June 4–5, 2014 600 ± 4% 41.7% 48% 10.3%
Rasmussen Reports June 4–5, 2014 750 ± 4% 44% 45% 3% 9%
Public Policy Polling May 15–19, 2014 914 ± 3.3% 45% 39% 16%
Hickman Analytics April 24–30 500 ± 4.4% 44% 40% 16%
Suffolk University April 3–8, 2014 800 ± 3.5% 37.63% 29.75% 32.63%
Rasmussen Reports March 24–25, 2014 750 ± 4% 40% 37% 23%
Quinnipiac University March 5–10, 2014 1,411 ± 2.6% 42% 29% 1% 27%
Public Policy Polling February 20–23, 2014 869 ± 3.3% 41% 35% 23%
Quinnipiac University December 10–15, 2013 1,617 ± 2.4% 44% 38% 1% 17%
Harper Polling November 23–24, 2013 985 ± 3.12% 41.91% 35.96% 22.12%
Public Policy Polling July 5–7, 2013 668 ± 3.8% 45% 33% 22%

Results[edit]

2014 Iowa U.S. Senator general election[121]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Joni Ernst 588,575 52.1% +14.8%
Democratic Bruce Braley 494,370 43.8% -18.9%
Independent Rick Stewart 26,815 2.4% +2.4%
Libertarian Douglas Butzier 8,232 0.7% +0.7%
Independent Bob Quast 5,873 0.5% +0.5%
Independent Ruth Smith 4,724 0.4% +0.4%
Other Write-Ins 1,111 0.1% +0.02%
Majority 94,205 8.3%
Turnout 1,129,700
Republican gain from Democratic Swing

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  95. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Republican State Senator David Johnson". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. August 20, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  96. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Republican State Senator Tim Kapucian". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. August 1, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  97. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Former State Representative Renee Schulte". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. July 31, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  98. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Republican State Senator Amy Sinclair". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. August 19, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  99. ^ "State Representative Rob Taylor Endorses Ernst for U.S. Senate". The Iowa Republican. July 24, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  100. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of State Senator Dan Zumbach". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. October 29, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  101. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Dallas County Recorder Chad Airhart". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. July 29, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  102. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Adel City Councilman Jon McAvoy". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. September 12, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  103. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Waukee City Councilman Isaiah McGee". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. September 13, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  104. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Mills County Auditor Carol Robertson". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. October 16, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  105. ^ "Joni Ernst Announces Endorsement of Story County Treasurer Renee Twedt". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. October 17, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  106. ^ "PAC endorsement". March 12, 2014. Retrieved March 13, 2014. 
  107. ^ "SCF Endorses Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate In Iowa". Senateconservatives.com. April 25, 2014. Retrieved July 26, 2014. 
  108. ^ "ShePAC Endorses Joni Ernst For United States Senate". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. October 2, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  109. ^ "National business group picks Joni Ernst over GOP rivals in Iowa U.S. Senate race". Des Moines Register. May 13, 2014. Retrieved May 13, 2014. 
  110. ^ "Voices of Conservative Women PAC Endorses Joni Ernst for United States Senate". Joni Ernst for U.S. Senate. November 1, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  111. ^ "The 'major endorsement' for GOP's Mark Jacobs? Bill Northey". Des Moines Register. May 15, 2014. Retrieved May 15, 2014. 
  112. ^ Vander Hart, Shane (December 30, 2013). "Matt Whitaker Endorsed by Former Hawkeye Brad Banks". Caffeinated Thoughts. Retrieved February 13, 2014. 
  113. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Endorsements". Whitaker for U.S. Senate. Retrieved May 13, 2014. 
  114. ^ "U.S. Senate candidates Braley and Ernst agree to 3 debates". Qctimes.com. August 28, 2014. Retrieved August 16, 2015. 
  115. ^ Douglas Butzier (L) 1%, Bob Quatz (I) 0%, Ruth Smith (I) 0%, Rick Stewart (I) 1%
  116. ^ Douglas Butzier (L) 0.6%, Bob Quatz (I) 0.6%, Ruth Smith (I) 0%, Rick Stewart (I) 1.2%
  117. ^ Douglas Butzier (L) 2%, Bob Quatz (I) 1%, Ruth Smith (I) 0%, Rick Stewart (I) 1%
  118. ^ Douglas Butzier (L) 1%, Bob Quatz (I) 0%, Ruth Smith (I) 2%, Rick Stewart (I) 2%, Other 1%
  119. ^ Rick Stewart (I) 2.2%, Douglas Butzier (L) 1%, Ruth Smith (I) 1%, Bob Quast (I) 0.6%
  120. ^ Douglas Butzier (L) 2%, Rick Stewart (I) 2%, Ruth Smith (I) 1%, Bob Quast (I) 0%
  121. ^ "Iowa secretary of State : Paul D. Pate : November 4, 2014 General Election". Electionresults.sos.iowa.gov. Archived from the original on December 13, 2014. Retrieved August 16, 2015. 

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