Speculation may have been spurred last night on Iowa Press when former governor and current US Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said he would not rule out putting his name on a ballot again.
From the radioiowa news story:
Former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack says he wants to come back to Iowa and he isn’t ruling out another run for political office. Vilsack has served in President Obama’s cabinet since January of 2009, as the nation’s ag secretary.
“I have been really blessed and privileged by this state and the one thing I definitely want to do, regardless of the future, is I want to come back here and I want to contribute in some way,” Vilsack says. “I don’t want to go some place else. I want to come back home because this is where the people of Iowa gave me all these extraordinary opportunities and I will be forever indebted to them.”
Vilsack, who grew up in Pennsylvania, met Christie Bell of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, in college and adopted her hometown as his own after the couple married. Vilsack was elected mayor of Mount Pleasant and won a seat in the state senate before being elected governor in 1998. Vilsack won reelection in 2002, but did not seek a third term, saying eight years was enough. He’s not ruling out the idea of putting his name on an Iowa ballot again, though.
The first thought would be that Vilsack would most likely be interested in a state wide office. The major state wide office that would be up in the next election would be US senator. That seat is of course occupied by Chuck Grassley. In 2016 at the time of the next election, Grassley will be completing his 36th year as a senator and his 58th year in a legislative position. Over the years Grassley has embarrassed Iowans over and over, but somehow he keeps getting re-elected. Defeating Grassley will be a monumental task even at the then age of 83.
Here is an ad from his last run to remind us what an embarrassment Grassley can be:
Vilsack will have the name recognition that many of Grassley’s opponents have not had. He also will be running in a presidential year which historically has helped the Democratic turnout. As things are shaping up now, a national ticket with Hillary clinton at the top may add a spur to that turnout.
Just speculation folks. Removing Grassley from the senate should be a top priority for Iowans.