Sarah Huckabee Sanders to headline U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst event

By: - August 24, 2022 5:41 pm

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, former White House press secretary, speaks in a file photo from 2018. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of State)

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, former White House press secretary during Donald Trump’s presidency, will headline U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst’s annual Roast and Ride fundraiser this October.

“Sarah Huckabee Sanders is a good friend and relentless fighter for our strong, conservative values,” Ernst said in a statement.

Sanders, who is currently running for governor in Arkansas, has visited Iowa several times during presidential election cycles. She last visited Iowa in 2020, speaking alongside Trump at his Des Moines rally, and headlined Gov. Kim Reynolds’ Harvest Festival in 2018. She also served as national political director for the campaign of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, her father, in 2008. Huckabee won that year’s Republican Iowa caucuses.

Sanders will return to Iowa for Ernst’s event Oct. 22. The Roast and Ride returns after a two-year hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and will now feature a “Ruck March,” a military hike made with a rucksack, alongside the typical motorcycle ride and pig roast.

The Roast and Ride has featured many Republican presidential candidates since its inception in 2015. Trump headlined the event in 2016 before winning the presidential election. Former Vice President Mike Pence, U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley and U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham have also spoken at the Ernst fundraiser.

Ernst is not up for re-election until 2026, but Sanders linked the event with the upcoming midterm election.

“Joni Ernst is on the frontlines every day, pushing back against the radical policies of the far left in Washington, D.C., and I am excited to join my friend at her annual Roast & Ride this year,” Sanders said in a statement. “Iowans, like Arkansans, know that we need to elect strong conservatives in November who will defend our freedom and enact bold reforms.”

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Robin Opsahl
Robin Opsahl

Robin Opsahl is an Iowa Capital Dispatch reporter covering the state Legislature and politics. They have experience covering government, elections and more at media organizations including Roll Call, the Sacramento Bee and the Wausau Daily Herald.