Dem Challenger Sorry for Calling Senator a Farmer

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Bruce Braley apologized Tuesday in person to Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley for comments recorded during a fundraiser in Texas in which the Democrat implied Iowa’s senior senator was unfit to be judiciary committee chairman since he was a “farmer.”

“If you help me win this race, you may have someone with your background, your experience, your voice … on the Senate Judiciary Committee,” Braley told the group of attorneys, in a video from the January fundraiser. “Or you might have a farmer from Iowa who never went to law school, never practiced law, serving as the next chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.”

Braley is expected to be the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate and would face one of six Republicans who are running in the June 3 primary. Several issued statements demanding Braley apologize, arguing the comments were offensive to farmers.

Grassley, a Republican in his sixth term, has long owned a farm, where he returns most weekends to work. He routinely notes in committee hearings that he is the only non-lawyer on the panel, which oversees judicial nominations.