Politics

Dem House Candidate Rails Against Blum For Laying Off Workers, Laid Off Half Her Employees

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Despite laying off half the employees at her market-research firm, Iowa Democratic House candidate Monica Vernon repeatedly blasts GOP Rep. Rod Blum for laying off employees during his time as CEO of Eagle Point Software.

Both Vernon and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee recently released ads slamming the Iowa Republican, alleging 70 employees lost their jobs during his tenure for his own personal gain — an attack used by former congressional hopeful Patrick Murphy during the last election cycle.

While Securities and Exchange Commission filings show the number of employees at the company dropped by 28 percent, the Iowa Republican Party disputes the claim it laid off workers on its website, saying the company chose not to replace workers who left.

“First, our company never had layoffs. From time to time, as dictated by market forces, we didn’t replace workers when they left the company— the workforce organically grew and occasionally contracted via attrition,” Dennis George, the Chief Financial Officer of Eagle Point Software from 1989-2001, said in a 2014 fact check.

According to court documents filed by a former employee disputing the loss of unemployment benefits, Vernon Research Group shrank dramatically and discharged a number of people while restructuring.

“At its peak, the company had 20 full-time equivalent employees,” it reads. “At the time [employee] separated from the employment, the company had nine or 10 employees.”

The Blum campaign pushed back against the allegations, saying the ads are merely reflecting of the type of campaign she is running.

“This is hypocritical politics as usual from a candidate running a cynical DC-style campaign, and yet another example of the Washington culture that Congressman Blum is working to clean up,” Blum for Congress spokesman Daniel Sunne said when asked about the attacks.

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