Grassley's grandson to be Iowa's next House speaker

Grassley's grandson to be Iowa's next House speaker
© Greg Nash
 
Iowa House Republicans on Monday picked state Rep. Pat Grassley (R), the senator’s grandson, as their next speaker, the latest rung on a political ladder the younger Grassley has been climbing since he first won election in 2007.
 
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Pat Grassley will take over for state House Speaker Linda Upmeyer (R), who said last week she would not seek another term in office.
 
“It is a true honor to be the next Speaker and I am humbled by the support from the House Republican caucus,” Pat Grassley said in a statement.
 
A biography released by the House Republican Conference after the vote says the younger Grassley still works with his father and grandfather on the family farm, where they grow corn and soybeans and raise cattle.
 
Pat Grassley’s elevation will likely set off a new round of speculation that he is positioning himself to take over for his grandfather. Chuck Grassley won election to his seventh term in 2016. He would be 89 years old when his current term expires in 2022.
 
The Grassleys have downplayed the notion of a dynasty in the past.
 
“He and I have never had that discussion and he’s never told me the he wanted to run for the United States Senate,” Chuck Grassley told reporters in 2013.
 
In a statement, Chuck Grassley credited his grandson’s advance partly to Upmeyer, the departing speaker.

"I’ve watched my grandson Pat mature as a freshman legislator at age 23 to become a very effective leader in the Iowa House. I attribute the mentorship of Speaker Linda Upmeyer for serving as a tremendous role model to Pat and the entire Republican caucus. Notably, Pat became chairman of the Appropriations Committee after just nine years. He likes to remind me that it took fifteen years for me to earn that gavel,” Grassley said Monday.

"Barbara and I continue to be very proud of our grandson and have full confidence Pat will serve Iowans well as he takes on his new role as speaker."