Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, oldest member of Senate, hospitalized with infection

WASHINGTON (AP) — Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, the oldest member of the U.S. Senate, has been hospitalized in the Washington area with an infection and is receiving antibiotic infusions, his office said Tuesday.

Grassley, 90, will return to work “as soon as possible following doctors’ orders,” his office said in a statement, and he is in good spirits. The statement did not give any additional details about his condition.

The Iowa Republican had hip surgery last year and briefly used a scooter to get around. But the eight-term senator, who was long known for his daily early morning runs, has appeared otherwise healthy in the halls of Congress even as he became the Senate’s only nonagenarian in September.

Grassley, currently the top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, was first elected to the Senate in 1980. As the seniormost Republican, he was the president pro tempore of the Senate until 2021 when Democrats assumed control. The president pro tempore presides over the chamber, opens proceedings every day and is third in the line of presidential succession.

Grassley’s political career began in 1956, when he was elected to the state Legislature at age 23. He served 18 years at the Statehouse before being elected to the U.S. House in 1974.

He became the oldest senator last fall after the death of Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California. She was three months his senior.