The Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Iowa, state Sen. Joni Ernst, suggested that if additional U.S. troops had remained in Iraq for a longer period of time, the current situation of the U.S. conducting airstrikes against Islamic militants in the country wouldn’t be happening.
Ernst made those comments in an interview with ABC News. In response to a question about how fighting with Islamic militants affected her thinking Ernst said “What we see going on in Iraq right now — If this current administration had followed guidance from military leaders many years ago, we would not be in this situation.”
Then, when asked whether she supports airstrikes that U.S. forces have been conducting, Ernst said if U.S. troops had remained in Iraq longer this wouldn’t be the current situation.
“I can say is—What I would have supported is leaving additional troops in Iraq longer, and perhaps we wouldn’t have this situation today,” Ernst said.
The comments come as the United States conducts multiple airstrikes against Islamist militants in Erbil, the Kurdish regional capital of Iraq.
The airstrikes, President Barack Obama said Saturday, successfully destroyed arms and equipment of the militants. Obama, when he gave those comments on Saturday, also suggested that the premise and argument that his administration erred in not pulling troops out of Iraq “bogus.”
Watch Ernst’s comments below: