Rodney Davis announces run for sixth term in Congress, ending speculation on challenge to Pritzker


Congressman Rodney Davis (R-Taylorville

Taylorville congressman will be representing West-Central Illinois should he win in 2022.

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Taylorville) on Tuesday announced he’ll run for a sixth term in Congress, ending months of chatter about his possible entrance in the Republican primary to unseat Gov. JB Pritzker in 2022.

“Democrats in Washington have put our nation in crisis with their big government, socialist schemes and dreams,” Davis said in a statement officially announcing his re-election campaign on Tuesday. “Republicans are primed to retake the House next year, and I’m ready to work with a new Republican majority to finally fire Nancy Pelosi and hold the Biden Administration accountable for their massive failures. I look forward to campaigning hard and earning every vote in this district over the next year.”

Davis began weighing a run against the first-term Democrat earlier this year, but that was long before Democrats, who control the General Assembly, unveiled newly drawn congressional districts last month. The majority party carved Davis out of much of his current 13th Congressional District, but left him with a new 15th district safer than the one he’s held onto for the last nearly nine years.

Since then, Davis has held off on announcing which office he’d seek, but it was widely acknowledged he’d likely stay in Congress. He told reporters in August that was his ambition, though he said his political future was in Democrats’ hands.

“Hoping to remain in Congress,” Davis said at a GOP event prior to the party’s day at the State Fair in Springfield this summer. “But it’s not my choice. It’s the choice of the corrupt Democrats in Springfield.”

Davis has already received the endorsement of State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy), State Rep. Randy Frese (R-Quincy), State Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer (R-Jacksonville), Adams Co. GOP Chairman Dave Bockhold, Pike Co. GOP Chairman John Birch and Hancock Co. GOP Chairman Kathy Sparrow.

Democratic mapmakers instead chose to take most of the current 13th District — which stretches from Champaign at its easternmost point and Bloomington-Normal in the north southwest to the Mississippi River and parts of the Metro East — and condense it into a new 13th District favorable for former Pritzker adviser Nikki Budzinski in her bid for Congress.

After announcing her run in late August, Budzinski’s initial campaign messaging targeted Davis as an opponent. But Democrats placed Davis’ hometown of Taylorville in the newly drawn 15th District, which runs all the way from near the Quad Cities in its northwest corner, southeast to Terre Haute, Indiana, looping back southwest catching territory south of Champaign, Decatur and Springfield to the outskirts of the Metro East.

Illinois’ current congressional map (left) vs. Illinois’ new congressional map (right).

Congressional candidates don’t have to live in the same district they’re running for. But even factoring in having to learn hundreds of square miles’ worth of new constituencies, running in the 15th District is a safer bet for Davis, who has had to fend off Democratic challengers in all five of his campaigns.

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