Tribute to the Honorable Terry Branstad, Governor of Iowaby Representative David Young
Posted on 2015-12-11
in the house of representatives
Friday, December 11, 2015
Mr. YOUNG of Iowa. Mr. Speaker, I rise to recognize and congratulate
Governor Terry Branstad for his service to Iowa. On December 14, he
will break a 200 year-old record, set by Revolutionary War General and
New York Governor, George Clinton, becoming the longest-serving
Governor in American history.
Born and raised in a small town in rural Iowa, Governor Branstad's roots in our state run deep. He has spent his life immersed in Iowa politics and elected office. His storied political career stretches back five decades. It began in 1973, when he was first elected to the Iowa House of Representatives. Governor Branstad served in the Iowa House until 1979, and then a single term as Lieutenant Governor before winning the gubernatorial election in 1982, at the age of 36.
Governor Branstad served four consecutive terms and guided Iowa through one of the [[Page E1784]] toughest times in our state's history--the 1980's Farm Crisis. During this time, Governor Branstad worked to diversify Iowa's economy. Today, Iowa's economic strengths include agriculture, advanced manufacturing, renewable energy, technology, and financial services, among other things. By the time he left office in 1999, Iowa's unemployment rate was at an impressive low of 2.2%.
After leaving office, Governor Branstad entered the private sector, becoming President of the Des Moines University in 2003. In October 2009, displeased with the condition of the state, Governor Branstad felt called to serve once more. He won the 2010 election, and got to work balancing the state budget, lowering the unemployment rate, improving Iowa schools, increasing government transparency and accountability, and enhancing opportunities for Iowans.
Governor Branstad has dedicated his life to serving Iowans. He unapologetically promotes Iowa and he is a true leader--willing to make tough decisions and fighting for what he believes is best for our state. He is a man of integrity and keeps his promises to Iowans. Governor Branstad's strong work ethic, down-to-earth demeanor, and accessibility are reasons Iowans admire him. Since he was first elected Governor of Iowa, he has visited all 99 counties in our state, every year, to hear directly from Iowans about their concerns.
Mr. Speaker, Governor Branstad has dedicated his life to improving the lives of Iowans. It is with great honor I recognize him for reaching this historic milestone. I ask my colleagues in the United States House of Representatives to join me in congratulating Governor Branstad for this outstanding accomplishment and in wishing him nothing but continued success.