DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Gov. Terry Branstad has met with President-elect Donald Trump as speculation grows that the Iowa governor could be offered an ambassadorship.
Ben Hammes, a spokesman for the governor, says Branstad and Trump met for about an hour Tuesday at Trump Tower in New York City.
Trump praised the long-time governor at an Iowa rally before the election, calling him a "prime candidate to take care of China." It's led to rumors that Branstad could become the next U.S. ambassador to China.
Branstad said in a press release after the meeting that the pair discussed Iowa's role in the presidential election and the transition into Trump's new administration. The governor added that he had no announcement to make at this time regarding a possible appointment.
Here is Gov. Branstad's full statement:
I appreciate the invitation that President-elect Trump extended to my wife and me today. I'm in New York on an economic development mission and I truly appreciated the opportunity to meet. We had a very cordial conversation about the role Iowa played in his overall success by winning 93 or 99 counties and flipping 34 counties that previously went for President Obama. It's clear that his jobs message resonated with Iowans and the rest of the country. It's refreshing to see his bold leadership that will put people to work, give power back to the states and Make America Great Again.
We also talked about the transition and his new Administration. He is putting together a great cabinet that will serve the American people well. While there has been speculation regarding an appointment to serve in this Administration, I have no announcement to make at this time.