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Stu Rothenberg moves CD13 race to “Lean Republican”

Friday, Aug 15, 2014

* From the Rothenberg Political Report

While political reporters, analysts and party strategists argue over whether there is or is not a wave approaching, one thing is clear: it’s an extremely difficult landscape for Democratic candidates.

Candidates, party committees, and outside groups are polling dozens of House races as they formalize their fall ad strategies. And increasingly the news ranges from good to great for Republicans, and very few competitive races trending toward Democrats. […]

Illinois’s 13th District. Former Madison County Judge Ann Callis started the cycle as one of Democrats’ top recruits. But her challenge to Rep. Rodney Davis (R) just isn’t materializing. The congressman is in a very strong position and Gov. Pat Quinn is proving to be an anvil around the neck of Downstate Democratic candidates. We’re moving the race from Toss-Up/Tilt Republican to Lean Republican.

I don’t think he’s far off there. You?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Stones - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 3:45 pm:

    All politics is local and I don’t pretend to know the lay of the land in S. Illinois. That being said, I agree with the premise that it is an extremely difficult landscape for Democratic candidates this cycle.

  2. - 'Goose - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 3:48 pm:

    I think Davis is sitting pretty here. If the 20 and 30-something waitresses at Saputo’s tell me they’re voting for him, and he’s a great guy, I think he’s got it locked up.

  3. - The Captain - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 3:52 pm:

    That district leans Republican to begin with. I think the Democrats are going to win it at least once under this map but it’s more likely that it will happen in a presidential year than an off-year and it doesn’t help that she’s on the same ballot downstate with the party’s gubernatorial candidate who has the most trouble in the southern half of the state.

  4. - What's Up Doc - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:02 pm:

    Even many Democratic activists and party regulars in the 13th CD have recently been saying privately that Callis probably won’t win–and not just because of the Governor.

  5. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:03 pm:


    The differences between Callis and Enyart are incumbency and Metro East tendencies.

    The Davis Crew are in the driver’s seat, to “Champaign County” Crew’s dismay.

  6. - Apocalypse Now - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:04 pm:

    This is the first time Callis has had to run in a competitive race. She is way out of her element, and underwhelming in her performance. Looks like the correct call.

  7. - Johnny Justice - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:13 pm:

    Callis may not win because of factors beyond her control, but to say her performance is underwhelming is way off base. She is a great candidate, smart, articulate & very personable in contrast to the stiff impersonable Davis. It is hard not to like Callis, whereas the opposite is the case with her opponent.

  8. - joan - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:15 pm:

    I think you nail it Johnny Justice… everyone thought Rodney would crush his primary and it got way to close for comfort, I think the same is true. You just can’t take Champaign for granted in that district and that’s why I’m going to vote for Callis.

  9. - Anonymoiis - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:21 pm:

    ==That district leans Republican to begin with. ==

    I disagree with that. When it was drawn it appeared a possible Dem district. Without question more competitive than Tim Johnson’s old district. Unfortunately for the Dems, Rodney is extremely popular in some areas where Dems could normally count on ok results, like Christian County.

  10. - Big Debbie - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:22 pm:

    Agree that governor is a drag downstate for Callis. But Davis is a horrible rep. who refuses to even attend public appearances (at least outside Taylorville) and is disliked widely across the district. Plus the DCCC has gone in big for Ann and is hiring FOs around the district. That said, I’ll wait until we can get some public polling on the race before I will say anything about anyone’s chances. Interesting that, if Davis is in such a good spot, he hasn’t released any polling.

  11. - Anonymoiis - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:24 pm:

    == stiff impersonable Davis.==

    You’re the first person, no matter party, I’ve heard say that about Rodney…assuming you’ve actually met him and aren’t just blowing smoke.

  12. - LincolnLounger - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:26 pm:

    I used to think this would be a close race, but Davis will win very comfortably.

  13. - Anonymoiis - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:28 pm:

    ==who refuses to even attend public appearances (at least outside Taylorville) and is disliked widely across the district.==

    Odd statement, considering people I know from Champaign to Metro East see him there a lot at luncheons, parades, etc. probably tough to see that with your blue tinted glasses on, though.

  14. - joan - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:28 pm:

    Big Debbie is also spot on and has helped highlight the rampant misogyny of Davis supports. Davis might as well say he supports repealing women’s suffrage.

  15. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:29 pm:

    ===But Davis is a horrible rep. who refuses to even attend public appearances (at least outside Taylorville) and is disliked widely across the district. ===

    That’s what Erika thought too, lol.

  16. - Anonymoiis - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:31 pm:

    == You just can’t take Champaign for granted in that district and that’s why I’m going to vote for Callis.==

    I see Joan is still obsessed with the thought that Champaign County is somehow entitled to the seat.

  17. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 4:31 pm:

    ===Big Debbie is also spot on and has helped highlight the rampant misogyny of Davis supports. ===

    Oh - joan -, it has be tough being on the outside, looking in. If Champaign County stomps it’s feet real load, it wi drown out the laughter at the Johnson Crew.

  18. - walker - Friday, Aug 15, 14 @ 6:20 pm:

    The ground is shaking. Tsunami coming?

  19. - Frustrated Voter - Monday, Aug 18, 14 @ 9:45 am:

    Callis is attractive in pictures, but has no personality and isn’t good on the stump or in crowds. She’s never had to run a campaign before, and it’s showing. I’m not a big fan of Davis, but for those claiming he’s stiff, impersonable or unlikeable, you couldn’t be more off-base. I don’t agree with many of his votes, but he’s one of the most likeable politicians I’ve met in a while. Truly a nice guy. Calling him misogynistic is foolish too, especially since his chief of staff is a woman.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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