Axne reports a staff member has tested positive for COVID-19

    U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, receives her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. (Photo submitted by Axne's office)

    U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, D-3rd District, announced that a staff member from her office tested positive Wednesday for COVID-19.

    The staff member, who was not identified, accompanied the congresswoman last week on her 16-county district tour and began to experience virus symptoms over the weekend.

    Axne learned of the symptoms on Monday and began a “precautionary self-quarantine” and participating in regular U.S. House business remotely. She will receive a COVID-19 test “soon,” according to the release, and she is not experiencing any symptoms.

    Axne announced Jan. 6 that she had received her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. Spokesman Ian Mariani said in an email she received her second dose of the vaccine in Washington prior to returning to Iowa last week for in-district events. But, he said, two family members in her household have not been vaccinated. People who have received the shots could still carry the virus, Mariani noted.

    Axne’s release said the events last week were conducted “with strict COVID-19 protocols in place, including face masks for every attendee and social distancing at all stops.”

    The release said Axne’s team contacted everyone who attended with this staffer earlier this week to disclose the possible case of COVID-19, and attendees will be updated with the news of the positive test.

    Kathie Obradovich
    Editor Kathie Obradovich has been covering Iowa government and politics for more than 30 years, most recently as political columnist and opinion editor for the Des Moines Register. She previously covered the Iowa Statehouse for 10 years for newspapers in Davenport, Waterloo, Sioux City, Mason City and Muscatine. She is a leading voice on Iowa politics and makes regular appearances on state, national and international news programs. She has led national-award-winning coverage of the Iowa Caucuses and the Register’s Iowa Poll.