Joni Ernst

Joni Ernst

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Joni Kay Ernst is a Republican, American politician and former military officer serving as the Junior United States senator from Iowa since 2015. Ernst is the fourth-ranking Republican in the Senate and is Chair of the Senate Republican Policy Committee since 2023.

Early Life and Military Career

Born in Red Oak, Iowa, in 1970, Joni’s life began on a farm, instilling in her a strong work ethic and connection to rural values. at Stanton Community School District High School , She was the  valedictorian of her class After graduating  in psychology from Iowa State University  in 1992 and a Master of Public Administration degree from Columbus State University in 1995, she joined the U.S. Army Reserves at the age of 20. In 2003, she served as a company commander in Kuwait and Iraq, and served in during Operation Iraqi Freedom. After 23 years of military service she retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Iowa Army National Guard. Her experiences as a combat veteran and company commander shaped her perspectives on national security and leadership.

Political Career

Joni’s political journey began in 2004 when she was elected Montgomery County Auditor,She was reelected in 2008 focusing on fiscal responsibility and transparency. In 2011, she entered the Iowa State Senate, where she championed conservative values and earned recognition for her outspoken nature.

Historic Victory in the Senate

In 2014, Joni made history by becoming the first woman elected to represent Iowa in either house of Congress and the first female combat veteran to serve in the U.S. Senate. Her campaign focused on economic empowerment, strong defence, and fiscal responsibility, resonating with voters across the state. Ernst ran for re-election and won in 2020.

Tenure in the Senate

Since taking office, Joni has established herself as a vocal advocate for conservative policies. She is a member of the Senate Republican Conference, the Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee, and the Armed Services Committee. Her Committee assignments include : 

Ernst opposes legalized abortion, She opposes the Affordable Care Act and has called for reforms to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. Ernst had also voted for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. She opposes the idea of  federal minimum wage and has said that states should have the sole authority to set their minimum wages. She supports open carry legislation, which allows guns to be carried openly in public. Ernst is a Staunch supporter of Donald Trump.


Joni Ernst remains a prominent figure in American politics. Her journey as a combat veteran, auditor, and senator is an inspiring story of resilience and determination. Her impact on the Republican party and her influence on national debates continue to be significant. Her story of hard work, military service, and political success continues to inspire women and rural Americans across the country. She published her memoir, “Daughter of the Heartland: My Ode to the Country That Raised Me” in 2020.

Joni lives in Red Oak. Her daughter is a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.

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