Grassley, Branstad critical of Trump's remarks on family of fallen soldier

Published: Aug. 1, 2016 at 5:04 PM CDT
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Iowa Senator Charles Grassley and Governor Terry Branstad, both republicans, are distancing themselves from the controversy surrounding Donald Trump after the Republican presidential candidate questioned the Muslim family of a fallen soldier.

Khizr and Ghazala Khan spoke at the Democratic National Convention saying Trump's comments against Islam dishonor their son's sacrifice. Trump quickly tweeted criticism of the family and questioning their motives.

Several top Republicans have since flocked to support the Khan family and denounce Trump's comments. On Monday, Iowa Senator Grassley and Governor Terry Branstad joined that chorus.

"I just think that anyone that has died in the service of our country is a hero," Branstad said. "I believe that was a mistake. I believe the focus needs to be on the differences that he has with Hillary Clinton in terms of policies."

“We ought to honor anybody who fought to maintain our freedoms, no matter what race, religion or background," Sen. Grassley wrote in a statement. "We owe them and their families the utmost respect. I’m proud to be friends with a family of Muslim faith from Cedar Falls whose son served as an officer in our armed forces. He was proud to serve, and I am proud to know him. Mr. Trump’s comments are not in line with my own beliefs about how the members of the military and their families should be treated, and respect for the people who serve our country is something both presidential campaigns could use more of."