Joni Ernst: Jeb Bush Should Return to Iowa, Ride a Harley

The Iowa Republican says if Bush wants to ride, she'll "get him hooked up."

Now that Jeb Bush has officially launched his presidential bid, Sen. Joni Ernst has a very specific campaign suggestion for him.

Ernst, an Iowa Republican, invited Bush for a motorcycle ride on the day of his White House campaign launch, saying she would welcome him to the first-in-the-nation caucus state "with open arms."

On June 6, Ernst got the chance to see Bush's competition during her inaugural "Roast and Ride" barbecue and motorcycle event for presidential hopefuls. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, the proud owner of a Harley Road King, stole the spotlight while Bush celebrated his mother's 90th birthday in Maine.

"I'd love to see him on a Harley," Ernst said Monday of Bush. "So if he wants to come in and ride a Harley, I'll get him hooked up."

Bush, who attended Iowa events in March and May, faces a tough road in the state, which will hold its presidential caucus on February 1. A Des Moines Register poll at the end of May showed Walker on top and Bush lagging behind a few other candidates, with a sizeable chunk of respondents viewing him unfavorably. Bush decided to skip the state Republican Party's Iowa Straw Poll before it was canceled.

"I'd like to see him come in and get his staff going," Ernst said. "He will come in. I know they'll come in. We're going to welcome them with open arms."

Ernst, who hasn't endorsed anybody yet this cycle, added that Bush's last name is not a problem for him in Iowa.

"I don't think so," she said. "No more than Hillary Clinton."