Nov 9, 2022 - Politics

Zach Nunn ousts Cindy Axne in key U.S. House win for GOP

Iowa Republican U.S. Congressional candidate Zach Nunn speaks to supporters during a Republican Party of Iowa election night rally, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Des Moines, Iowa. Photo: AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall

Republican challenger Zach Nunn ousted Democratic incumbent Cindy Axne, narrowly winning Iowa's 3rd Congressional District, according to the Associated Press Wednesday afternoon.

Why it matters: As one of the most at-risk Democrats, Axne's race was closely watched and well funded as Republicans across the country hoped to overtake the U.S. House in a "red ripple."

What happened: Axne initially won her seat by a narrow margin against David Young back in 2018 by winning with wider margins in Polk County and avoiding huge losses in rural areas.

  • The district became more favorable to Republicans following redistricting that saw the addition of more rural counties.

The big picture: Democrats across the country braced themselves for GOP gains in Congress as likely Republican voters reported inflation and the economy as their priorities during the midterm.

Where it stands: Control of Congress still hangs in the balance as of Wednesday afternoon, as some competitive House contests remain uncalled and three Senate races are outstanding.


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