Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad took a jab at fellow Republican and Iowa Rep. Steve King Monday, suggesting that the congressman should not run for Senate next year, something he has said he is pondering.
A serious Republican contender has yet to emerge to run for the Iowa Senate seat that will be open in 2014 when Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin retires.
Branstad said Monday during his weekly news conference that the next senator should not be a congressman, Radio Iowa reported.
“I really believe that Iowans want somebody that will serve in the Senate that will be an Iowa problem-solver, not another congressman,” Branstad said.
“You know Congress is a mess. We’ve seen them spend a trillion dollars more than they take in every year and so the Democrats have decided, ‘Well, we’re going to send up another congressman.’ That’s the last thing we need is another congressman in the United States Senate,” he went on.
Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley is running for the seat, and has received the endorsement of Harkin and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
“The contrast of having an Iowa problem-solver versus somebody that’s had all of their service in Washington, D.C. in the Congress would be a very good thing for Republicans,” Branstad said.
“That last thing we need is another congressman in the United States Senate. The Congress is so messed up. They are so unable to make tough decisions. They are so far out of touch with the public in terms of their spending policies that we just need somebody that’s going to come there with fresh ideas, and we’ve got some of those in Iowa,” Branstad said.
King told The Daily Caller last week that he remains undecided about a Senate run. His office did not immediately respond to request for comment on Branstad’s remarks.
Update, 6:50 p.m.: King told TheDC, “There’s no way to respond to the inquiry while maintaining the necessary verbal discipline.”