Iowa's senior U.S. senator helps counter by the example he sets the disillusionment so many Americans express about Congress. He works collaboratively with other senators — both Democrats and Republicans.
A study just released by the Lugar Center and Georgetown University's McCourt School of Public Policy illustrates Grassley's exemplary commitment to bipartisanship. The researchers evaluated how often members of the Senate work across party lines as evidenced by bill sponsorship and co-sponsorship. It based its conclusions on data drawn from the 114th Congress (2015-2016).
Grassley ranked No. 5 out of the 100 U.S. senators in terms of documented bipartisan behavior.
"Many Americans might be surprised to learn that real bipartisanship exists these days in Washington," Grassley said in a statement reacting to the study's conclusions. "I hope my work for Iowans serves as an example that working together is not only possible, but also should be expected of elected officials. Just this Congress, there's been bipartisan legislation involving veterans' access to health care, prescription drug costs and combating sexual assault on campus. I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to find common ground to address the problems facing the nation."
In the 114th Congress, the Judiciary Committee, which Grassley now chairs, reported 30 bills out of the committee, 24 of which were passed by the full Senate and 17 of which became law. All were bipartisan.
That's an impressive record that deserves strong praise.
Grassley's exemplary performance reminds us that good government requires collaboration and cooperation in the public interest. Unfortunately, too few federal officeholders seem to be committed to that approach.
The Messenger applauds Grassley's record. Iowans should be proud that they have sent to Washington a senator who is dedicated to the highest standards of public service. We hope that other officials at all levels of government will take note of Grassley's performance and be inspired to put the public interest ahead of partisanship.
This editorial appeared in the April 28 edition of the Fort Dodge Messenger.