Coming Your Way in June: The JoniFest

Well, it was bad enough that after winning a Senate seat in no small part due to unforced errors by her opponent and a media herd fascinated by her signature idiot-savant ad and uninterested in her extremism, Joni Ernst was chosen to deliver the official GOP response to the SOTU address. Now she’s presuming after fifteen minutes in office to replicate her predecessor Tom Harkin in holding a signature party event. While Harkin had his Steak Fry, for Ernst it will be the “Roast and Ride,” the better to highlight her lethal relationship with hogs and her Harley riding.

Under a gigantic photo of the new Senator, Politico’s Glueck and Hohmann assess her suddenly titanic political clout, and figure her event will be a can’t-miss for the presidential field. The new hep 2016 candidate, Scott Walker, who shares a major consultant with Ernst, has already committed to be there.

Almost every speaker at King’s event over the weekend mentioned Ernst. There were lots of jokes, including from Walker, about Ernst’s commercial last year in which she talked about castrating pigs as a kid before promising to “make ‘em squeal” if she went to Washington.

Ernst, for her part, spoke at King’s event about the importance of winning the presidency in 2016 and reelecting senior Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).

“I think we’re all aware that we must take back the White House,” Ernst said in her speech, which she delivered before flying to California for a Koch brothers-sponsored donors seminar. “If we expect to get through this gridlock and have signed into law the wonderful legislation we’re passing, we must have a Republican president.”

She was not made available for an interview for this story.

Why should she bother with doing interviews? She’s being treated like political royalty without them, and doesn’t face the temptation to say crazy things like she used to pretty regularly. It’s just a matter of time until she’s at the top of everybody’s Veep lists.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.