President Barack Obama on Wednesday endorsed former Iowa Lt. Gov. Patty Judge in her race against Sen. Charles E. Grassley, who has led the GOP effort to block his latest Supreme Court nominee.
"Patty has never backed down from a challenge," Obama said in a statement. "I have no doubt that she will carry this spirit with her to the United States Senate."
Obama has not been afraid to jump into Senate races this year, endorsing Katie McGinty in Pennsylvania, Rep. Tammy Duckworth in Illinois and Rep. Patrick Murphy in Florida.
Obama and Grassley have clashed since March when Grassley said he would not hold hearings for appeals judge Merrick Garland, Obama's selection to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court.
Judge alluded to the stalemate in her remarks.
"Chuck Grassley has become part of the problem," she said. "Instead of doing his job, he’s playing cynical political games that have stalled progress for working families in Iowa."
A poll last month showed Grassley had a small lead over Judge. The Roll Call/Rothenberg & Gonzales rating labels the race as a safe one for Republicans.