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The week that Iowa reported its 90,000th confirmed case of COVID-19, Sen. Joni Ernst sat behind a plexiglass partition and told a debate audience watching from home what she thinks about masks.
“Even though they’re homemade, they work,” said Ernst, an Iowa Republican, showing off a mask emblazoned with the logo of Iowa State University, the largest university in the state.
But what about requiring people to wear masks when they cannot safely distance themselves? On that, she sided with the state’s Republican governor and President Donald Trump, contradicting evidence that states with mask mandates have seen bigger drops in coronavirus cases than those without: “We know that it doesn’t work,” she