|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Iowa's 3rd district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2019
|Preceded by||David Young|
Cynthia Lynne Wadle
April 20, 1965
Grand Rapids, Michigan, U.S.
|Education||University of Iowa (BA)|
Northwestern University (MBA)
Cynthia Lynne Axne (//; née Wadle; born April 20, 1965) is an American businesswoman and politician serving as the U.S. Representative from Iowa's 3rd congressional district since 2019. A member of the Democratic Party, she defeated incumbent Republican David Young in the 2018 election. The district is anchored in the state capital, Des Moines; it includes much of the state's southwest quadrant, including Council Bluffs. Following the defeat of Abby Finkenauer and the retirement of Dave Loebsack from Congress, Axne became the sole Democrat in Iowa's delegation in 2021. She currently is the dean of Iowa's delegation to the House of Representatives.
Axne was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1965, the daughter of Terry and Joanne Wadle. She graduated from Valley High School in West Des Moines, Iowa. She earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Iowa and a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University.
After graduating from college, Axne worked in leadership development and strategic planning for the Tribune Company in Chicago. From 2005 through 2014, she worked in Iowa state government on service delivery in over 20 state agencies in the executive branch.
During the 2018 elections, Axne ran for the United States House of Representatives in Iowa's 3rd congressional district.
Axne won the primary election with 57.91% of the vote. She defeated incumbent Representative David Young in the general election and became, along with Abby Finkenauer, one of the first two women from Iowa elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. Young carried 15 of the district's 16 counties, but Axne won Polk County, the most populous county in the district and home to Des Moines, by over 30,000 votes, far exceeding the overall margin of 8,000.
Axne won the Democratic primary virtually unopposed, only running against write-in candidates. She then went up against David Young in a rematch during the general election and narrowly won with 48.9% of the vote compared to Young's 47.6%.
Axne took office amidst the 2018–2019 United States federal government shutdown and requested that her pay be withheld until the shutdown ended. On January 30, 2019, Axne co-sponsored a bill to prevent future federal government shutdowns from happening; the bill was titled Shutdown to End All Shutdowns (SEAS) Act.
Axne is currently serving on the United States House Committee on Agriculture. After Republican Steve King, representing Iowa's 4th congressional district, was removed from all his committee assignments by Republican leadership for making racist remarks, Axne became the only Iowan on the committee.
|Democratic||Eddie J. Mauro||14,582||26.33|
|Republican||David Young (incumbent)||167,933||47.1|
|Legal Marijuana Now||Mark Elworth Jr.||2,015||0.6|
|Democratic||Cindy Axne (incumbent)||76,681||99.2|
|Democratic||Cindy Axne (incumbent)||219,205||48.9|
|Libertarian||Bryan Jack Holder||15,361||3.4|
Axne and her husband John currently operate a digital design firm. They have two teenage sons and live in West Des Moines. Axne and her family are members of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in West Des Moines.
Axne is 6 feet (1.83 m) tall.
A former West Des Moines Valley basketball player who stands six feet tall...