Area legislators Johnson, Smith re-elected to GOP leadership
DES MOINES - Senate Republicans met Wednesday at the Iowa Capitol and elected their leadership team for the 85th Iowa General Assembly, which convenes Jan. 14, 2013.
Thursday, Rep. Jeff Smith (R-Okoboji) was re-elected as assistant majority leader in the Iowa House.
State Sen. David Johnson (R-Ocheyedan) was re-elected Senate Republican assistant leader, a post he has held since 2005.
"The support and trust of my peers is deeply appreciated as we plan our agenda for next session and beyond," Johnson said.
Through reapportionment after the 2010 Census, Iowa has newly drawn legislative districts beginning in 2013. Johnson will be representing some 60,000 northwest Iowans in Clay, Dickinson, Lyon, Osceola and Palo Alto counties.
"I look forward to working with my colleagues this session to rein in state government, help Iowans keep more of their hard-earned dollars, and adopt policies beneficial to the agriculture and manufacturing base of northwest Iowa and the rest of the state," Johnson said. "I also look forward to again representing Lyon County, as I did during my four years in the House, while welcoming the new opportunity to represent the citizens of Palo Alto County. I will miss the constituents and friends from O'Brien and Sioux counties but plan to stay in touch.
Johnson was first elected to the Iowa House in 1998 and then won his current Senate seat in 2002. He is the top Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee and serves on the Appropriations, Education and Human Resources committees. He also is ranking member of the Senate Health and Human Services Budget Subcommittee, where rising Medicaid costs, the impact of the federal health-care law on Iowa, and services to seniors and people with disabilities will be major issues.
"I think we've put sound leaders in place for the upcoming legislative session," said Sen. Bill Dix (R-Shell Rock), who was elected Senate Republican leader. "I look forward to serving the state in the Republican leadership role and know that our job is just beginning. We will work to enact meaningful legislation that will grow jobs and the economy."
Smith, who was recently re-elected by the people of Lyon, Osceola and Dickinson Counties to the Iowa House, has previously served as an assistant House majority leader since May.
"I'm honored that House Republicans have once again selected me to serve on their leadership team," Smith said. "House Republicans look forward to continuing to work on behalf of Iowans and move forward with ways to make Iowa stronger."
Smith was first elected to the Iowa House in 2010.