JOHNSTON, Iowa (AP) -- U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley said Friday he'll seek a seventh term in 2016 because his retirement would leave Iowa without the clout that accompanies seniority.
Speaking during a taping of the public television program "Iowa Press," Grassley responded to a question that he would seek a seventh Senate term.
"I'm planning on running for re-election," Grassley said. "I'm making plans, but it's not taking much of my time. I'm concentrating on doing my job for Iowans, on being there when we're in session, doing my oversight, doing my legislation, doing my town meetings in the 99 counties every year. Just doing what a senator ought to do.
"I'm a firm believer if you do a good job with what you're doing, people recognize it and the future takes care of itself."
Grassley told The Des Moines Register after the taping that he decided to run again a couple months ago when longtime Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin opted not to seek another term in 2014.
Grassley, a Republican from New Hartford, said if both senators retired, Iowa would be hurt by a lack of seniority.
"If Iowa had to start over two years from now with two very junior senators it would hurt Iowans' opportunities to get anything done in the Senate," Grassley said.
Grassley celebrated his 80th birthday Tuesday by completing a 6-mile run to the Capitol.
He was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1980, and previously served three terms in the U.S. House. He was first elected to the Iowa Legislature in 1958.
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