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He entered politics immediately after college, serving in the Iowa House of Representatives from 1959 until 1974, when he was elected to the United States House of Representatives, of which he was a member from 1975 to 1981, being reelected in 1976 and 1978. He was elected to his Senate seat in 1980, defeating the Democratic incumbent, John Culver, who had only served one term. Grassley was reelected in 1986, 1992, 1998, and 2004.
Grassley has been chairman of the Finance Committee since 2003 and was also its chairman from January to June 2001. Grassley is a member of The Family, a Christian group that organizes the National Prayer Breakfast.
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