Abby Finkenauer concedes in 1st District

Republican Ashley Hinson wins with 51 percent of vote in hotly contested race

U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer talks with supporters at the Linn County Democratic campaign office on Monday in Cedar Rapids.
U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer talks with supporters at the Linn County Democratic campaign office on Monday in Cedar Rapids. Finkenauer lost Tuesday’s election to Republican challenger, state Rep. Ashley Hinson. Both said Wednesday they would work on a smooth transition. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer offered her congratulations and concession to Republican challenger state Rep. Ashley Hinson on Wednesday, but promised to continue to represent the district’s needs in the U.S. House through the end of the year.

“Much work remains in the weeks before the end of my congressional term, and I am committed to delivering for the people of the 1st District and the state,” the first-term Democrat said in a statement. “The pandemic continues. Derecho recovery goes on. We have work to do, and I intend to do it.”

Hinson, a two-term state legislator from Marion, defeated Finkenauer, 51 percent to 49 percent, in the 1st District, which covers northeast Iowa, including Cedar Rapids, according to unofficial results from the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office.

“It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve Iowans in the Statehouse and in Congress over these last six years,” said Finkenauer, 31.

“I love our state and our country, and I still believe in the promise of a democracy that represents and serves the interests of its constituents. We must never give up hope that we can be an Iowa and a country defined by compassion, empathy, grit and determination to get things done.”

The Cedar Rapids Democrat pledged to work with Hinson on a transition that “serves the people of northeast Iowa and ensures their needs are met.”

The two former Iowa Statehouse colleagues visited Wednesday.

“We had a good chat about what Congress is going to be like,” Hinson said. “There are a lot of constituent challenges because of the derecho that are in process right now. So we’re going to be working together, my team and her team, to make sure that Iowans are best served in this transition.”

As she did election night, Hinson thanked Finkenauer for her service.


“I’m sure she is probably not done in her service,” Hinson said. “And I would just, again, thank her for her commitment to serving Iowans.”

Comments: (319) 398-8375; james.lynch@thegazette.com

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