Tonight, Cindy Axne claimed victory in her campaign to represent Iowa’s Third Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives for the 117th Congress.
“I am grateful that the voters of central and southwest Iowa have chosen me to represent them in Congress again next year,” said Cindy Axne. “Having the reaffirmed trust of Iowans to be their voice in Washington renews my commitment to fight for them in the weeks, months, and years ahead.”
After receiving her opponent’s concession by phone earlier tonight, Cindy Axne spoke to a virtual crowd of supporters to celebrate her victory and thank the volunteers who helped in her reelection bid.
“While it is too early to know exactly what our government will look like next January, it’s important to see these record levels of early voting and turnout as a message that we are ready to come together and fix the issues facing our nation,” said Cindy Axne.“Many of you know these issues yourself, and in turn joined our fight to make lives better in Iowa by volunteering your time on this campaign. To those folks, I have to say thank you.”
In her remarks, Cindy Axne highlighted her renewed commitment to combating the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, securing vital aid for Iowans still feeling the economic impacts of the disease, expanding access to affordable quality health care, growing opportunity and investments in infrastructure, and holding government accountable in her second term.
Her remarks as prepared for delivery can be found below:
Good evening, everyone.
Thank you so much for tuning in tonight – I’m glad we were able to connect with so many of you on a night that would normally have had us together, watching the results of this historic election.
Let me start by saying I am grateful that the voters of central and southwest Iowa have chosen me to represent them in Congress again next year.
Having the reaffirmed trust of Iowans to be their voice in Washington renews my commitment to fight for them – for you all – in the weeks, months, and years ahead.
I also want to thank my opponent, David Young, for a hard-fought campaign. I heard from David just a few moments ago, and I appreciate his words as this election comes to a close.
When I first decided to run for Congress, I wasn’t doing it to make headlines.
I ran because I believed that our representatives in Washington weren’t listening to Iowans or putting us first.
And after that election two years ago – I committed to never stop listening, and never stop putting Iowans’ interests first.
I went out and held 57 town halls in my first year in office – across all sixteen counties of this district – to hear the struggles and concerns of our families, businesses, and communities.
And I fought to get real wins for Iowa – to repeal costly health care taxes, deliver flood relief to those along the Missouri, to revive biofuel tax incentives, and work across the aisle to strengthen our industries and neighborhoods.
When I was elected, I had no idea the challenges that our state would face.
Over the past two years, Iowans have braved historic flooding, a trade war, a derecho, the longest government shutdown in history, and now the worst public health crisis in a generation.
Our families have lost jobs, homes, and loved ones.
Our businesses have faced the worst period of economic instability in a decade, the kind that has shuttered too many beloved and vital cornerstones of our cities.
And the bravest among us – our health care professionals and first responders – have put their lives on the line to protect Iowa from all manner of threats.
We have felt the impacts of these crises together.
And as I speak to you tonight, I feel obligated to remind you that this election does not mark the end of the hard times we’ve faced in Iowa.
It can, however, mark the beginning of a new direction in the fight to get us back on track.
And while it is too early to know exactly what our government will look like next January, it will still be important to come together and fix the issues facing our nation.
Many of you know these issues yourself, and in turn joined our fight to make lives better in Iowa by volunteering your time on this campaign.
To you, I have to say thank you.
You didn’t volunteer out of cynicism, you didn’t volunteer out of pessimism.
You did it because you know that our country can do better, and should do better, for its citizens.
I wish I could be with you in person tonight to thank each of you for the work you did to help lead us to victory.
Not being able to celebrate with you in person tonight is a small sacrifice, however, and a necessary one as the coronavirus still hangs over our nation.
Celebrating remotely is the least we can do, in fact, to ensure we keep our neighbors safe.
And as the fervor of this election wanes and we return our focus to this ongoing crisis – we as a nation must come together and continue to make these sacrifices to save those still at risk.
We wear masks to prevent one more family from being denied the chance say goodbye to a loved one by their side.
We practice social distancing so we can safely keep businesses open, and avoid the need for us to shut down more parts of our economy.
And we follow the advice of our medical experts to prevent them from being overwhelmed in our hospitals as they fight around the clock to keep Iowans alive.
There are times in our nation’s history where we have sacrificed in order to endure.
Many have given their lives in service to our nation.
Many more have toiled to see it grow into the greatest in the world.
And now, we all have a chance to share in their legacy and their sacrifice.
Tonight was always going to be a moment to reflect on the work still to be done.
Tomorrow, the sun will rise on a country still in turmoil – and it is up to all of us to sacrifice where we can so that we can endure as one nation.
Over my past two years in office, I’ve spoke to Iowans all across this district and listened as they shared the issues that keep them up at night – the anxieties that leave them staring at their ceilings, unsure of the future ahead of them.
And as crises like the pandemic continue to ravage our state – we’re seeing the systemic issues that are keeping Iowans up at night further exposed as the priorities we need to stay focused on.
Without a doubt, ensuring everyone has access to affordable, quality health care is now more important than ever.
We need legislation signed into law to lower prescription drug costs and address surprise medical billing.
We need to strengthen the protections provided by the Affordable Care Act.
And we need to end the decades-long effort to dismantle the law in our legislative chambers and our courts.
We also need to support real prosperity and economic growth for Main Streets across Iowa – not Wall Street.
We need to invest in our communities, close the digital divide with rural broadband expansion, and fix our crumbling infrastructure while creating good-paying jobs for more Iowans.
We have to support our next generation and ensure they have access to quality education, skills training, and opportunities without having mountains of student loan debt.
We have to accept, once and for all, that climate change is real – and that it is our responsibility to fight it by expanding renewable energy investments and strengthening the resiliency of our communities.
And we need to hold our government accountable for its use of Iowa’s taxpayer dollars by making sure we’re not bailing out big corporations or misusing funds that are meant to be used to help those who are hurting.
The Iowans who cast their votes for me know these are my values.
They know that my priorities don’t come from any board room or corporate retreat.
My values come from Iowa’s kitchen tables, and the to-do lists taped to fridges.
They come from the bills piled on desks, plaguing families who struggle to make ends meet and keep a roof over their head.
And they come from the stories, shared or scrawled on a note at one of my town halls, handed to me by Iowa mothers and fathers who had that look in their eyes that Iowans know all too well – the proud and determined look of someone who is taking the world and its troubles head-on, but is too selfless to ask for help.
These are my values, and I know the challenges that lie ahead.
But, I know that together – we can overcome and come back stronger than ever – because Iowans know hard times, and we know endurance.
Together, we can outlast and rebuild – and put ourselves on a path to even greater prosperity in the weeks, months, and years to come.
We can help those in need, get those who are struggling back on their feet, and stand together, as one, to enter this next decade stronger than ever before.
That starts tonight. Let’s get going. Thank you again and goodnight.