Former Capitol Hill aide David Young announced Thursday that he will drop his bid for Iowa's open Senate seat and instead run for the House seat being vacated by longtime Rep. Tom Latham, according to the Des Moines Register.
Young, who served as chief of staff to Iowa Republican Sen. Charles E. Grassley, was one of at least seven Republicans running for the open Senate seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa.
When Latham announced his retirement from the 3rd District last month, however, Young said he decided to shift gears.
“For Republicans to have a clear shot at winning that Senate race, we need to avoid a convention, and me moving to Iowa 3 narrows that field and puts us closer to that goal,” Young told the Des Moines Register. In Iowa, if no candidate garners 35 percent of the vote, the nomination goes to a party convention.
Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz, a Republican, is also gearing up for a bid to replace Latham.
A source close to Schutlz's campaign said he will announce his candidacy for the 3rd District later next week. State Sen. Brad Zaun is also considering a run.
With Latham's retirement, Iowa's 3rd District becomes a highly competitive contest. President Barack Obama carried the district by a 4-point margin in 2012.
Former state Sen. Staci Appel, a Democrat, announced her bid prior to Latham's retirement. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee touts Appel as a top-tier recruit.
Iowa’s 3rd District is rated a Pure Tossup by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.