Sen. Chuck Grassley says lower approval rating will not be a factor in his reelection decision

In a Wednesday conference call with reporters, Sen. Chuck Grassley said that the recent Iowa Poll that showed Grassley down in approval won’t be a factor in his decision to run for another term.


Sarah Watson

Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, talks to reporters at the Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference in Des Moines Friday, August 17, 2018.

Julia Shanahan, Politics Editor

A poll conducted by the Des Moines Register/Mediacom showed that a majority of Iowans polled do not want to see Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley run for reelection, but Grassley told reporters Wednesday that polling won’t be a factor in the 87-year-old’s decision to seek an eighth term.

“You don’t make a decision to run based upon anything other than taking your work into consideration, taking your family into consideration, and visiting with a lot of Iowans,” Grassley said Wednesday.

The poll, which polled 775 Iowa adults between March 7 and March 10 by Selzer & Co., showed that 28 percent of Iowans hope that Grassley will run for reelection, 55 percent hope that he does not run for another term, and 17 percent are unsure.

Grassley told reporters previously that he plans to make an announcement in the fall on if he plans to run for reelection. In February, Grassley told reporters that he does not want his age to be a factor in his decision, saying that he still gets up every morning at 4 a.m. to jog two miles. 

On Tuesday, Grassley told Radio Iowa that he doesn’t “fear any poll like that.”

The poll, which was released March 13, also showed Grassley as having his lowest approval rating since 1982 at 48 percent. But, Grassley told reporters Wednesday that polling is not always an accurate depiction on how Iowans will vote. He cited a 2013 poll that showed former Republican Gov. Terry Branstad behind in public approval and then later going on to win reelection by 20 points.

“I’ve got a responsibility to continue working hard for Iowans, and I hope that I do work hard by getting to the office at six in the morning and being around the Capitol until 6:30 in the afternoon … And so that’s about all I can say because that’s the same thing I’ve been saying all along,” Grassley said.