Fort Madison, IA – Terry Branstad was the longest serving governor in Iowa history. He served four consecutive terms from 1983-1999.
Branstad says Iowa had a great deal of success while he was in office. He says the state recovered from the farm crisis, enjoyed record employment levels, and experienced surplus budgets.
Branstad says things are much different in Iowa today. He says the state is now facing its highest unemployment rate and its worst financial situation in history.
Branstad says that is why a candidate with his experience is crucial at this time. He says his time in office separates him from his Republican primary opponents, Rep. Rod Roberts and Bob Vander Plaats.
"I think on the issues," says Branstad, "we are in pretty close agreement. I just think right now, the state of Iowa needs someone with the experience who can hit the ground running."
Branstad says if he is elected, he would focus on improving education.
His plan includes the reinstatement of programs that encourage high school and college students to become teachers and provide incentives to those who do. Branstad says he would also give local districts more control and provide benefits for high performing districts.
Branstad says, if a district is struggling, he would expect to see administrators and teachers replaced.
Branstad says he would also push for a constitutional amendment on the definition of marriage being between one man and one woman.
The former governor made his comments during a campaign stop in Fort Madison. You can learn more about Terry Branstad here.