What do Joni Ernst, the Kochs and Glenn Beck have in common?

August 15, 2014

Ever the Koch brothers’ crony, Iowa candidate for Senate Joni Ernst is in lockstep with their radical agenda, advocating the Kochs’ stance on numerous issues, including opposition to an increased minimum wage and support for cutting Medicare’s guaranteed benefits. Turns out the Kochs and Ernst don’t just share the same extreme, out-of-touch policy positions, they also subscribe to the same obscure conspiracy theories.

Yahoo News has the scoop this week on Ernst’s repeated rants against Agenda 21, an anti-U.N. conspiracy theory favored by the likes of Glenn Beck. Agenda 21 is a voluntary community planning provision that has been on the books for decades, yet as MSNBC notes, it seems like Ernst has “given the fringe topic quite a bit of thought.” Indeed, according to the Yahoo report, Ernst has warned “that Agenda 21 could force Iowa farmers off their land, dictate what cities Iowans must live in, and control how Iowa citizens travel from place to place.”

Not ones to miss out on crying foul about any affront (imagined or otherwise) to property rights, the Kochs’ Americans for Prosperity Foundation has voiced similarly misguided claims about Agenda 21. In 2012 — two whole decades after the provision was adopted — AFP Foundation released an anti-sustainable development “Need to Know” brief, saying that Agenda 21 “will literally change the way we live.” Hardly the first example of AFP’s fear-mongering rhetoric having a tenuous relationship with reality.

Agenda 21 is just the latest example of the Koch brothers and Joni Ernst propagating the same radical conservative ideology.  To recast an age-old expression, Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst is an extreme, Koch-approved conservative in moderate’s clothing.

Paid for by American Bridge 21st Century Foundation