Republican Joni Ernst reminded her opponent, Democrat Bruce Braley, and Iowa’s voters that she is committed to defeating the Islamic State and has put her own boots on the ground.
"I will remind you that I have served in Iraq," Ernst said. "My boots were on that ground that is now held by ISIS. So when we make these decision I take them very seriously."
Ernst blasted the Obama administration for its failure to address the threat from the Islamic State when militants first gained traction in Syria.
Ernst said all criteria need to be assessed before "committing our sons and daughters" to another war in the Middle East.
Ernst is a lieutenant colonel in the Iowa National Guard. She served as a company commander in Iraq in 2003.