Grassley explains his “ask me in a month” comment

Last week, a Des Moines Register reporter asked Grassley if he agreed with Republicans in the state legislature who are pushing for a constitutional amendment which would ban gay marriage in Iowa. "You better ask me in a month, after I've had a chance to think," Grassley told the paper's Thomas Beaumont.

Today, Grassley explained the remark and bristled at the suggestion his stand on gay marriage isn't crystal clear. From the Radio Iowa story:  Grassley says he was hesitant to comment on the same-sex marriage issue initially as he was accused of meddling in state legislative affairs a few years ago by statehouse Republicans after it seemed he was trying to tell them how to vote on an ethanol bill.

The Iowa Democratic Party weighed in on this earlier today, via news release.  Read it below.

DES MOINES, IA – Today, Iowa Democratic Party Chairman, Michael Kiernan, complimented Senator Charles Grassley for his ongoing deliberations regarding the recent Supreme Court decision. 

“I obviously disagree with Senator Grassley on many issues.  However, he deserves credit where credit is due.  He realizes that making a knee jerk reaction on this landmark decision is not worthy of the people he represents.”

On Friday, while taping Iowa Press, RPI Chairman Matt Strawn, when asked about the Court’s ruling said, “Everybody in the state had an opinion on that ruling within five seconds of it hitting the newswire except our Governor.”  Strawn continued, “That’s not leadership.” 

Unfortunately for Chairman Strawn, the leader of his own party, Senator Chuck Grassley, has yet to take a stance on the ruling and was quoted in the Des Moines Register stating, “You better ask me in a month, after I’ve had a chance to think.”

“By criticizing Governor Culver for taking time to review the decision he is also implying Senator Grassley doesn’t show leadership as well,” said Kiernan.  “Either Chairman Strawn was disingenuous with his criticisms or covertly accusing Senator Grassley of not being a leader.   I am sure all Iowans and Senator Grassley would appreciate knowing his intention.”

Matt Strawn, Chairman, Republican Party of Iowa: “And then Friday with the ruling with the Supreme Court they see a governor that comes out, everybody in the state had an opinion on that ruling within five seconds of it hitting the newswire except our governor. He puts out a two sentence statement talking about it being a complicated issue that he has to talk to his legal advisors about. That's not leadership and our people see that and Iowans see that, not just republicans..”  [Iowa Press, April 10, 2009:]

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.