Illinois: Republicans Pick Davis as Nominee in 13th

Posted May 19, 2012 at 3:58pm

Local Republicans selected Rodney Davis, a top aide to Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.), to be their nominee for the newly open House seat in downstate Illinois.

The 13th district county GOP chairmen picked Davis over three other candidates today, including Rep. Randy Hultgren’s (R-Ill.) chief of staff, Jerry Clarke.

Republicans were forced to pick a new GOP nominee following Rep. Timothy Johnson’s (R-Ill.)  sudden retirement after the March primary. His departure, plus a Democratic redraw of the district’s boundaries last year, make this seat competitive.

But Republicans were bullish about their prospects to keep the seat with Davis facing the Democratic nominee, emergency room doctor David Gill.

“With Rodney Davis as our nominee, the 13th Congressional District is staying in the Republican column,” Illinois Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady said after the vote.

Local GOP officials also interviewed former Miss America Erika Harold and businesswoman Kathy Wassink today, in addition to Clarke and Davis.