Ernst visits Rembrandt Foods in Spirit Lake

Source: Dickinson County News

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst said concerns about industry rules and regulations inspired her recent trip to northwest Iowa.

The Iowa Republican commented on the role of government regulations in business and the presidential election on Oct. 18 during a Spirit Lake stop at Rembrandt Foods, an egg producer and ingredient supplier. The visit was part of Ernst's 99-county tour across the state.

"We are at Rembrandt Foods right now and visiting about the implications of opening up the Farm Bill -- what rules and regulations might exist out there currently, what would hamper the industry," Ernst said. "But we also heard that when I was at Brown Fertilizer as well, over in Clay County, and the concerns that they have with over regulation coming from the federal government."

Ernst said the federal government needs to reduce regulations as a way to encourage growth and development in the private sector. The senator also stressed the importance of voting in the upcoming general election on Nov. 8. She said Iowans should still cast a ballot despite the controversies surrounding Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

"If you want your ideals to be reflected in the federal government, you need to make sure you go out and vote," Ernst said. "Whether it is at the local level, state elected officials or at the federal level, we need people to get out and vote. It is a very caustic election cycle, which may turn some folks off, but still we need to get out there. You can just focus on the policies and find a candidate that fits the policies you believe in and get out and vote."

Ernst doesn't believe the recent lewd remarks made by Trump in the leaked 2005 "Access Hollywood" tape will affect down-ballot races in Iowa. She said Iowans are capable of separating the presidential race from local, regional and statewide elections.

"In Iowa, I think our candidates do a great job at getting their own message out there," Ernst said. "That is one thing that is so wonderful about our constituents. They are so highly engaged when it comes to meeting with their elected officials and making sure their opinions are heard. I think they can separate whether it is a presidential candidate and their stances or who's working for them in a more local level. So, I don't know that it will affect down-ticket races much in Iowa. It might in other states. But overall, Americans are feeling frustrated. Iowans are included in that. They are very frustrated in what they see in federal government right now, and so the best way they can share their voice and frustrations is to get out to the ballot box."

Ernst spoke about last year's avian influenza outbreak and the effort to rebound as well.

"The effects of the outbreak on smaller communities was really devastating," Ernst said. "We really struggled with that last year, but what I have seen over the course of the year is a number companies, owners and individual employees that have worked really well with the federal government, providing feedback and how things can be done better."

Dickinson County was the 91st stop in Ernst's 99 County Tour. She made an appearance in Estherville at the Iowa Lakes Community College campus following the visit at Rembrandt Foods.

"I just visited with a group of employees here at Rembrandt Foods and told them I value these stops a lot, because I get to talk to these kinds of employees," Ernst said. "Many times they will share concerns either related to the industry that I am visiting or sometimes it is unrelated. I take away something new from every stop. It better educates me as a United States senator on what we have going on in Iowa."