JOHNSTON — Mike Franken, the Democratic challenger to Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, says Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling may prompt more Iowa independents and Republicans to say it’s time for a change.
“I think the Republicans have definitely outplayed their hand,” Franken says.
Franken notes Grassley played a role in blocking President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court and, as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, confirming some of the justices who issued Friday’s ruling that struck down Roe v Wade.
“And here we are, Chuck Grassley’s legacy,” Franken says, “and I’m so sorry for the state of Iowa that in a grand decades of service it ends up being the person who really has given us this mostly partisan Supreme Court and has in which they’re showing now.”
Franken describes the opinion as pushing the abortion issue to the state level, “which is directly in line with what Republicans have been working for for 30 years — win local elections, win state elections, push things down to the state and we’ll have our way and we’ll have those red states and blue states and we’ll have another Confederacy, of sorts,” Franken says .”I think it’s absolutely inimical to this nation and it’s just not going to go well.”
Franken does not favor expanding the U.S. Supreme Court, as some Democrats have proposed, but he says there should be an 18 year term limit for service on the nation’s highest court.
Franken made his comments during the Iowa Press program which aired over the weekend on Iowa PBS.
A spokeswoman for Grassley’s re-election campaign issued a written statement.
“Mike Franken ought to know better than to politicize the court and its rulings. The judiciary is an independent branch of government that makes its own decisions,” Michaela Sundermann said. “Mike Franken should condemn the radicals in his own party for attempting to intimidate the Supreme Court. Political threats and violence have no place in our democracy.”