Grassley lauds Trump for keeping campaign vows

Calls for reelection 'even if you don't like his tweets'

U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, stands behind President Donald Trump on Dec. 21, 2018, as senior adviser Jared Kushner
U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, stands behind President Donald Trump on Dec. 21, 2018, as senior adviser Jared Kushner speaks with the president during a signing ceremony for criminal justice reform legislation in the White House. (Jabin Botsford/Washington Post)

WILTON — Like Democrats running for president, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley has a plan to grow the economy and strengthen the middle class: Re-elect President Donald Trump.

Iowa’s senior senator wasn’t the first to jump on the Trump bandwagon during the 2016 Iowa caucuses campaign. He has not always been comfortable with the president’s language and style, but Grassley likes the results of his policies.

“Now I know that Trump every day may cause some of you to feel a little bit different toward him, but look at the policies and the eight years before,” Grassley told about 200 people, who broke into applause, Sunday night at the Kaufmann Family Fundraiser in Wilton.

The Republican senator pointed to Trump’s appointment of constitutionalist judges and Supreme Court justices as an example of the president keeping campaign promises. Trump’s commitment to reducing regulation and lowering taxes is strengthening the U.S. economy, he said. And that benefits everyone because “if you don’t grow the economy, there’s less for more people. If you grow the economy, there’s more for more people.”

Even if voters don’t agree with everything the president is doing, they shouldn’t be surprised by his policies “because he’s trying to carry out in office what he said he was going to do,” Grassley said.

“It seems to me he’s doing a pretty good job of that,” he said to more applause.

The fundraiser, hosted by Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Jeff Kaufmann and his son, state Rep. Bobby Kaufmann of Wilton, featured a conversation with Grassley and his grandson, Iowa House Speaker-select Pat Grassley. In addition to lighthearted banter, both Grassleys spoke of the importance of maintaining Republican majorities in their chambers.


Speaker-select Grassley called maintaining a GOP House majority his No. 1 priority in his new role. Only nine of the current GOP representatives have ever served in the minority.

“I tell my members how hard it is to represent your district when you’re not in the majority, when you’re not chairing committees,” he said. “And we can see what happened in Washington when Republicans lost control of one chamber.”

In addition to calling for Trump’s reelection, Sen. Grassley asked the audience to work for U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst’s reelection in 2020 because a Republican Senate is the “firewall against the outrageous progressivism that you see or hear about from every Democratic presidential candidate at this point ... (and) if some people change their mind about the presidency.”

Again, he acknowledged Republicans may not appreciate Trump’s style, but he asked them to look beyond that.

“Even if you don’t like his tweets or too much tweeting, it ought to reduce your cynicism when a person does what he says he’s going to do,” Grassley concluded. “Even considering some of his things the president says or does, I hope you look at his policies.”

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