Iowa Democrats Call on GOP Senate Candidates to Boycott Friday Forum with Anti-Women, Anti-Equality Moderator

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Des Moines – Today the Iowa Democratic Party called on the GOP U.S. Senate Candidates to boycott Friday’s Family Leader Forum moderated by anti-women, anti-equality media figure Erick Erickson and to denounce his hateful and harmful rhetoric. At a press conference at the Capitol, Lt. Gov. Patty Judge, Sen. Matt McCoy and IDP Executive Director Troy Price highlighted the offensive, misogynistic and homophobic views of Erickson and challenged Republicans Sam Clovis, Joni Ernst, Mark Jacobs and Matt Whitaker to stand up to his anti-Iowa values.

“Erick Erickson believes successful Iowa women are ‘concerning and troubling,’ but we should all be concerned and troubled that the GOP Senate candidates are providing Erickson and his misogynistic, obstructionist rhetoric with such a high profile platform,” said Lt. Gov. Patty Judge. “If running to the extreme right wing of their party is what the Republican Senate candidates feel they need to do to win the GOP primary, if they feel they must cater to hatred and sexism, then the Iowa Republican party has truly lost touch with Iowa’s families. The GOP Senate candidates should denounce Erick Erickson’s hateful remarks and boycott Friday night’s forum, because no matter your political affiliation, Iowa values are not based on hate and intolerance.”

“It is highly discouraging that the GOP’s U.S. Senate candidates would attend a debate moderated by someone who makes a living off of hatred and homophobia,” said Sen. McCoy. “For a state that has been such a national leader of progress, Erick Erickson’s views take us back to the time when intolerance dominated the conversation. Iowans want to go forward, not backward, and the GOP Senate candidates should do the right thing and refuse to attend Friday’s forum.”

As a story by Media Matters pointed out, there are few people in Iowa that Erick Erickson isn’t afraid to offend.  He disdains Iowa’s working women—believing that the increased number of women head of households is “concerning and troubling” and that biology mandates that males should play the “dominant role.” He is equally spiteful toward LGBT Iowans, having said that they are “on the road to hell” and that businesses that serve same-sex couples are “aiding and abetting” in sin.

Unfortunately, Erickson’s appearance in Iowa is just another example of the failed “GOP Rebrand” as Republicans from Des Moines to D.C. continue to alienate large swaths of voters with their anti-middle class policies and obstructionist tactics. Late last year, Mark Jacobs said to reach women voters, “you have to connect with women on an emotional level.” Joni Ernst has been quoted saying that Medicaid recipients “have no personal responsibility for their health and no accountability for the care provided.” And Sam Clovis declared that Arizona Gov. Brewer’s decision to veto legislation in Arizona that would have allowed businesses to discriminate against LGBT citizens “spawned of weakness” and that she could have instead “stood for something.”


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