DES MOINES — Iowa House Democrats have elected Rep. Mark Smith as their new leader.

Smith of Marshalltown was elected to serve as leader during a meeting in Des Moines Saturday. He is serving his 7th term in office. The Democrats are currently the minority party in the state House of Representatives.

The leadership role was vacant because the longtime leader, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, is resigning. He’s represented a Des Moines district for 11 years, including seven years as either the majority or minority leader.

McCarthy announced earlier this month that he would resign from elected office to take a position with the state attorney general’s office. His final day in office will be Aug. 15.

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