In 2011, Illinois Democrats tried to draw the 13th to elect one of their own by connecting the disparate college towns of Champaign-Urbana, Bloomington-Normal and Edwardsville with union-heavy cities like Decatur and the state capital of Springfield. But since 2012, GOP Rep. Rodney Davis has defied that creative cartography, winning reelection by comfortable margins.
Davis has succeeded in part because he's an affable, energetic member who eschews heated rhetoric, works diligently on the Agriculture Committee and chairs the moderate Republican Main Street Partnership. He's also benefited from Downstate Illinois's drift away from national Democrats: in 2008, the 13th CD gave Barack Obama 55 percent. In 2016, President Trump carried it by six points and Davis won it by 19.
But, this is the kind of seat that could be problematic for Republicans in a wave, and Democrats have a credible candidate in Springfield fundraising consultant Betsy Dirksen Londrigan. Londrigan can't definitively trace her ancestry to late Illinois GOP Sen. Everett Dirksen, but in March she defeated four primary opponents with 46 percent of the vote and has raised over $1
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