Former Madison County Chief Judge Ann Callis formally launched her campaign Tuesday to challenge freshman GOP Rep. Rodney Davis.
Callis is a top recruit of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Her entrance provides encouragement for a party that lost what it felt was a winnable seat in 2012.
“Like many of my friends and neighbors, I’m frustrated right now that Washington is not listening, and it’s not delivering for the middle class,” Callis said in a statement. “As Chief Judge, I’ve delivered reforms when Washington didn’t, and I’m running to deliver solutions for middle class families who are looking for good-paying jobs, and someone to protect Medicare and Social Security.”
Democrats received good news on May 3 when Gov. Pat Quinn appointed David Gill, a four-time unsuccessful congressional candidate who lost to Davis last year, to a state government post. The move cleared one potential primary hurdle for Callis.
Davis has been preparing for a tough re-election since winning this swing district, which Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama almost evenly split. The freshman raised more than $400,000 in the first quarter and had $334,000 on hand as of March 31.
The 13th District stretches from the eastern suburbs of St. Louis northeast to Champaign.