FILE - In this June 13, 2017 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks before having lunch with Republican senators in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, as Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, listens. Ernst says she turned down Donald Trump's request to run as his vice president in 2016 because of family concerns. Ernst made the claim in an affidavit in a divorce proceeding in October that was first reported by CityView, a Des Moines weekly newspaper. The filing was unsealed earlier this month after Ernst and her former husband of 25 years, Gail Ernst, settled their previously contentious divorce. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

Iowa Sen. Ernst says she turned down Trump during VP search

January 22, 2019 - 2:02 pm

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Sen. Joni Ernst says she turned down Donald Trump after interviewing to be his running mate, according to a court filing that describes an "extremely painful journey" that led to her divorce from a man she alleges was abusive.

The Iowa Republican wrote in an affidavit in her divorce proceeding that was first reported by Cityview, a Des Moines alternative newspaper. She said that after Trump interviewed her in 2016 to join his ticket, "I turned Candidate Trump down, knowing it wasn't the right thing for me or my family."

She doesn't explicitly say if he offered her the job.

Ernst has indicated she'll run for a second six-year Senate term in 2020.

The White House and Trump campaign haven't responded to requests for comment Tuesday.


This story has been corrected to clarify that Ernst's filing didn't explicitly say Trump offer her the running mate position.