A majority of Iowans – including more than a third of Republicans – say they hope Sen. Chuck Grassley will decline to run for reelection, according to a Des Moines Register poll released Saturday.
Grassley, 87, is in his seventh Senate term and his 62nd year of elected office in Iowa. The Senate voted unanimously to make Grassley president pro tempore in 2019.
If the state’s senior Republican were to win reelection in 2022, he would be 95 by the time his term ends.
Only 28% of Iowans said they wanted Grassley to run again, while 55% said that they did not, according to the poll. Another 17% of voters said that they were unsure.
Among Republicans, 50% said they would like to see Grassley run again, while 35% said the opposite, the poll said.
“It’s really hard to say” that Grassley should not run again given his legendary status in his home state, Austin McMinemee, a poll respondent, told the Des Moines Register. “But it’s just the age thing.” (RELATED: Chuck Grassley Returns To Work After Beating Covid-19)
Among Independents, 54% said Grassley should not run again. A majority of Democrats, 77%, said the same, according to the poll.
The poll also showed Grassley’s approval rating in steady decline. Just 48% of voters said they approved of the job he was doing, down from 58% in February 2019 and 70% in 2004.
His approval rating, however, was five points higher than Republican Sen. Joni Ernst, according to the poll. Ernst was reelected to a second term in November.
If Grassley were to retire, he would be the sixth Senate Republican to do so this cycle. Sen. Roy Blunt and Sen. Richard Shelby are vacating safe GOP seats in Missouri and Alabama, respectfully, while Sens. Rob Portman, Pat Toomey and Richard Burr are retiring in Ohio, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, states whose seats Democrats are aiming to flip in 2022. (RELATED: Lara Trump Weighs North Carolina Senate Bid)
The poll was conducted from March 7-10 among 775 adult Iowans. It has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.
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