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Joni Ernst "Greatly Offended" By Taylor Swift Comparison

"I think it's unfortunate that he and many of their party believe you can't be a real woman if you're conservative and you're female."

Posted on November 3, 2014, at 9:27 a.m. ET

Republican Iowa Senate candidate Joni Ernst said Monday she was "greatly offended" by comments retiring Democratic Senator Tom Harkin said last week comparing her looks to that of Taylor Swift.

"I was very offended that Sen. Harkin would say that. I think it's unfortunate that he and many of their party believe you can't be a real woman if you're conservative and you're female," Ernst said on Fox News Monday morning. "Again, I am greatly offended by that."

"I believe if my name had been John Ernst attached to my resume, Sen. Harkin would not have said those things," Ernst added.

BuzzFeed News reported Sunday evening Harkin said last week at an event honoring him that Iowa voters shouldn't be fooled because Joni Ernst is "really attractive" and "sounds nice."

"In this Senate race, I've been watching some of these ads," Harkin said. "And there's sort of this sense that, 'Well, I hear so much about Joni Ernst. She is really attractive, and she sounds nice.'"

"Well I got to thinking about that. I don't care if she's as good looking as Taylor Swift or as nice as Mr. Rogers, but if she votes like Michele Bachmann, she's wrong for the state of Iowa."

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.