DES MOINES, Iowa -- Iowa Governor Terry Branstad should learn Tuesday morning whether he has won over the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee to get recommended to become the next ambassador to China.
The committee scheduled a meeting on Branstad's nomination at 9 a.m. Iowa time on Tuesday.
Branstad has met with more than 40 members of the U.S. Senate, including most of the members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in the past month. He said Monday afternoon that he also had to provide written responses to members' followup questions after his two-hour hearing before the committee last Tuesday.
"Human rights, the south China Sea, North Korea," Branstad said of the issues brought up in the those followup questions.
Branstad doesn't plan to be in Washington for the committee's vote on his nomination. He will be in Iowa for previously scheduled bill signings, including one that will legalize some fireworks in communities that allow them.
He said he isn't nervous about the outcome. "Not really. I had a few butterflies going into the hearing before the senate foreign relations committee (last week)," the governor said. "I watched Secretary of State Tillerson's hearing. I watched the one for (Neil) Gorsuch for the Supreme Court. Fortunately, mine wasn't quite as tough as theirs."
The governor said Senator Chuck Grassley told him to expect the full Senate to vote on his confirmation next week. That would set in motion a timeline where Branstad would resign as governor and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds would replace him by the end of the month.