|Ranking Member of the House Administration Committee|
January 3, 2019
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Illinois's 13th district
January 3, 2013
|Tim Johnson (Redistricting)|
Rodney Lee Davis
January 5, 1970
Des Moines, Iowa, U.S.
Shannon Davis (m. 1995)
|Education||Millikin University (BA)|
Rodney Lee Davis (born January 5, 1970) is an American politician who has been the United States Representative for Illinois's 13th congressional district since 2013. A Republican, Davis successfully ran for re-election in 2014, 2016, and 2018.
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.
On May 19, 2012, the Republican County Chairmen for the 14 Illinois counties comprising the 13th district nominated Davis as the Republican candidate in the 13th District. This district had previously been the 15th, represented by six-term incumbent Republican Tim Johnson. He had announced in April that he would not seek re-election, just days after winning the Republican nomination. 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. Davis was coaching his sons' little league baseball game when he was informed that he had been nominated. His home in Taylorville had previously been in Shimkus' 19th District (which had been renumbered as the new 15th). However, the new 13th had absorbed much of the old 19th's eastern portion, including Davis' home in Taylorville.
Davis won re-election in 2016. He defeated Ethan Vandersand in the primary and faced Democrat Mark Wicklund and independent David Gill in the general election on November 8, 2016. Davis received 59.7% of the vote.
On March 20, 2018, Betsy Londrigan won the Democratic primary in District 13 with over 45% of the vote, beating Erik Jones, David Gill, Jonathan Ebel, and Angel Sides.
In May 2018, the American Federation of Government Employees endorsed Davis for re-election. AFGE District 7 National Vice President Dorothy James said, "We hope that Rep. Davis will continue his good work on Capitol Hill for years to come and are happy to announce our support for him today."
On November 6, 2018, Davis won reelection 50.7% to 49.3%, the narrowest win of his career. Davis lost the district's shares of Champaign, McLean and Sangamon counties-homes to Champaign-Urbana, Bloomington and Springfield, respectively. However, he won his native Christian County, as well as the largest whole county in the district, Macon County, home to Decatur. His margins in both Christian and Macon far exceeded his overall margin of 2,058 votes.
Davis is a member of the Veterinary Medicine Caucus and the Climate Solutions Caucus. He was previously a member of the Republican Main Street Partnership and served as chair of the Republican Main Street Caucus. As of March 2018, Davis had voted in line with President Donald Trump's position 96.5 percent of the time, according to FiveThirtyEight.
Davis said in a June 2018 interview that "we've got to stop this politicizing everything like dinner." He added that "Donald Trump was elected, in my opinion, because of this move toward making everything politically correct in this country."
Davis was ranked as the 23rd most bipartisan member of the U.S. House of Representatives during the 114th United States Congress (and the second most bipartisan member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois) in the Bipartisan Index created by The Lugar Center and the McCourt School of Public Policy that ranks members of the United States Congress by their degree of bipartisanship (by measuring the frequency each member's bills attract co-sponsors from the opposite party and each member's co-sponsorship of bills by members of the opposite party).
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."
In March 2018, in the wake of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, Davis said the shooting could have been prevented if the perpetrator had been charged with a felony for bringing a gun to school earlier. Davis said he believed more funding should be directed to mental health programs and that loopholes in background checks should be closed, but that he did not see banning guns as a solution.
Davis voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act. On May 4, 2017, Davis voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and pass the American Health Care Act (AHCA). During his re-election campaign, Davis claimed that The Washington Post fact-checker had found his opponent's claims about the impact of Obamacare's repeal on preexisting conditions to be false. The Washington Post fact-checker responded, saying that Davis was "twisting an unrelated fact check and [was] misleading voters."
In June 2016, Davis cast the deciding vote on a bill to retain the ability of undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children to join the U.S. military. The program would allow a quicker pathway to citizenship for those who serve.
In June 2018, Davis told an interviewer that he hoped to co-sponsor a "stand-alone bill" that would address the separation of adult illegal aliens at the Mexican border from the children accompanying them. He expressed optimism that the Congress could come up with some compromise on these issues.
Davis said the tax bill will improve the economy without impacting the deficit. He said Americans will see "more money in the pockets" come February 2018 as a result of the bill.
In a December 26, 2017, interview on CNN, Davis said that the U.S. would see increase tax revenue because of the economic growth resulting from the tax cut, and this, in turn, would bring down the national deficit.
In an April 2018 interview, Davis expressed concern about the impact of proposed tariffs on Illinois soybean farmers and other Illinois agricultural workers, but was glad that President Trump had given "a lot of free rein" to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. Davis highlighted unfair trade practices by China and noted the adverse effect on the domestic steel industry.
In a June 2018 interview, he reiterated concern about some of President Trump's proposed tariffs impact on his constituents as well as their impact on certain foreign countries. Although he felt "the president was right to actually address the steel discrepancy that he saw from countries like China," he wished that Trump "would focus on...actors like China rather than punishing our allies."
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.
This would have had 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. 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."
Davis is pro-life, opposes government funding for abortion, and is against religious institutions being required to offer health plans that include coverage for birth control.
Davis has cast several votes in favor of legalizing medical marijuana.
Davis has a "B" rating from NORML for his voting history regarding cannabis-related causes. Davis supports veterans having access to medical marijuana if recommended by their Veterans Health Administration doctor and if it is legal for medicinal purposes in their state of residence. He supports industrial hemp farming and medical marijuana research.
Davis holds various positions throughout his community. He serves on the Board of Education for St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church, where his family are parishioners and where he serves as volunteer athletic director. 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.
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 13th congressional district
| Ranking Member of the House Administration Committee|
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
| United States Representatives by seniority