Rodney Davis (politician)

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Rodney L. Davis
Rodney Davis, Official Portrait, 113th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 13th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Preceded by Judy Biggert
Personal details
Born Rodney Lee Davis
(1970-01-05) January 5, 1970 (age 45)
Des Moines, Iowa
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Shannon Davis
Residence Taylorville, Illinois
Alma mater Millikin University
Occupation Politician
Religion Roman Catholic [1]

Rodney Lee Davis (born January 5, 1970)[2] is an American member of Congress who has been the United States Representative for Illinois's 13th congressional district since 2013. He is a member of the Republican Party. Davis successfully ran for re-election in 2014.

Early life and education[edit]

Davis was born in Des Moines and is a lifelong resident of Taylorville, Illinois where he attended public school. Before attending college, he worked at a McDonald's that his parents operated.[3] He graduated with honors from Millikin University in 1992 with a degree in political science.

Early political career[edit]

After graduating from college, Davis worked for then-Secretary of State George Ryan. In 1996, he lost a race for the state legislature. In 1998, Davis managed the first re-election campaign for Illinois Congressman John Shimkus. Following the successful campaign, Davis accepted a position on Shimkus' congressional staff. In 2000, Davis lost his second campaign, this time for mayor of his hometown, Taylorville. Davis served as Shimkus' Projects Director while simultaneously running for Congress.[4]

U.S House of Representatives[edit]



On May 19, 2012, the Republican County Chairmen for the 14 Illinois counties comprising the 13th district nominated Davis to replace Illinois Representative Tim Johnson, who had announced in April that he would not seek re-election. In addition to Davis, other finalists for the nomination were Jerry Clarke, chief of staff to fellow U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren and Johnson's former chief of staff; Erika Harold, a lawyer and winner of Miss America in 2003; and Kathy Wassink, a businesswoman.[4] Davis was reportedly coaching his sons' little league baseball game when he was informed that he had been nominated.[5]

Davis narrowly defeated David M. Gill in the general election by a margin of 1,002 votes (0.3%).[6]


On June 13, 2013, former Miss America Erika Harold announced she would run against Davis in the 2014 Republican primary.[7] The primary took place on March 18, 2014. The Republican field included Davis, Harold, and Michael Firsching.[8] Davis won the primary with 55% of the vote.[8]

Davis went on to face Democrat Ann Callis in the general election on November 4, 2014.[9] He was a top target for the Democratic Party.[10] Despite this, Davis ended up winning the general election with 59% of the vote.[11][12]

Committee assignments[edit]


Davis introduced the Hire More Heroes Act of 2013 into the House on November 13, 2013. The bill would allow employers to exclude veterans receiving health insurance from the United States Department of Defense or the United States Department of Veterans' Affairs from their list of employees.[13][14] This would have the effect of keeping their list of employees shorter, allowing some small businesses to fall underneath the 50 full-time employees line that would require them to provide their employees with healthcare under the requirements of the Affordable Care Act.[14][15] Davis said that the bill "gives our small businesses another incentive to hire veterans, which helps to address the increasing number of unemployed veterans, while providing them with some relief from ObamaCare."[15]

Political positions[edit]

Davis voted for H.J.Res.59 – Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2014, which resulted in the Government Shutdown of 2013. After the vote, Politico reported that Davis also intended to vote for a bill that would end the shutdown, stressing that an agreement needed to be made and that "Like most of those I represent, I remain opposed to Obamacare, but a government shutdown is absolutely unacceptable."[16][17][18][19][20]

Davis voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act,[21] and voted to re-authorize the Violence Against Women Act.[22]

Davis considers himself pro-life, opposes public abortion funding, and is against religious institutions being required to offer health plans that include coverage for birth control.[23]

Davis supported the March 2013 budget that was proposed by Paul Ryan.[24]

Davis cosponsored the REINS Act (H.R. 367), a piece of legislation that would hold executive agencies responsible for costly regulations.[citation needed]

Davis is a proponent of building the Keystone XL Pipeline and increasing the production of coal and other natural resources.[25]

Davis supports the re-authorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and No Child Left Behind (NCLB).[26]

Personal life[edit]

Davis married his high school sweetheart, Shannon, in 1995, and the couple currently lives in Taylorville, Illinois.[27] They have three children.[4] Davis also holds various positions throughout his community. Davis serves on the Board of Education for St. Mary's Church, where he also serves as Athletic Director.[28] He coaches Taylorville Junior Football, is a member of the Taylorville Optimist Club, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Christian County Senior Center.[2]


  1. ^ Rep. Rodney L. Davis. "Roll Call". 
  2. ^ a b "Rodney Davis' Biography". Project Vote Smart. 
  3. ^ "Illinois, 13th House District". National Journal. 
  4. ^ a b c Petty, Allison (May 19, 2012). "GOP picks Rodney Davis to face Gill". Bloomington Pantagraph. 
  5. ^ "GOP chooses Davis for US Rep. Tim Johnson's seat". Associated Press. May 19, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Ballots Cast". Illinois State Board of Election. 
  7. ^ Last, Jonathan V. "Miss America vs. Mr. Incumbent". The Weekly Standard. 
  8. ^ a b Official Illinois State Board of Elections Results. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  9. ^ Cahn, Emily (2014-03-18). "Ann Callis, Rodney Davis to Face Off in Targeted Illinois District". Roll Call. Retrieved 19 March 2014. 
  10. ^ Camia, Catalina. Ex-Miss America Erika Harold begins Congress campaign, USA Today, June 4, 2013. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  11. ^ "Illinois General Election 2014". Illinois State Board of Elections. 2014-11-04. Retrieved 2015-03-03. 
  12. ^ Kacich, Tom (November 5, 2014) – "Davis: 'An Opportunity' for Republicans". The News Gazette. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  13. ^ "H.R. 3474 – Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Hultgren, Randy (13 January 2014). "Let's Give Jobs to Veterans: Hultgren Supports Hire More Heroes Act". Osqego Patch. Retrieved 11 March 2014. 
  15. ^ a b Kasperowicz, Pete (10 March 2014). "GOP eyes Dem help on ObamaCare". The Hill. Retrieved 11 March 2014. 
  16. ^ "FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 504". Retrieved 19 October 2014. 
  17. ^ "H.J.Res.59 – Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2014". Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  18. ^ ISENSTADT, ALEX (1 October 2013). "Vulnerable Republicans: End the shutdown". Politico. Retrieved 31 October 2014. 
  19. ^ "Legislation-Joint Resolution – Concurrence Vote Passed (House) (228-201) – Sept. 30, 2013". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 31 October 2014. 
  20. ^ "How Rodney Davis voted on key votes". Washington Post. Retrieved 31 October 2014. 
  21. ^ Mike Fitzgerald (December 3, 2013). "Health care glitches put twist on local congressional races". 
  22. ^ Bill Lambrecht (May 20, 2013). "In Illinois, Davis preparing for marathon race for Congress". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 
  23. ^ "Rodney Davis on Abortion". Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  24. ^ [1][dead link]
  25. ^ [2][dead link]
  26. ^ [3][dead link]
  27. ^ "". 
  28. ^ "St. Mary School". St. Mary's Church. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Judy Biggert
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 13th congressional district

Succeeded by
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Kevin Cramer
R-North Dakota
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
John Delaney