A letter to Congressman Rodney Davis from the Illinois 13th

Sent electronically on January 30, 2017, with paper copy to follow.

Rep. Davis,

We need you. It’s time to come out of hiding. In less than two weeks, Donald Trump has done his best to sabotage the Affordable Care Act without a replacement in sight, continued to profit from his foreign investments in direct violation of the Constitution, and spread the long-disproven lie that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 presidential election. Those are only some highlights. He’s also attempting to make seismic, short-sighted, and inhumane changes to immigration and environmental policy.

We don’t need you to disagree with the president on every issue. We understand that you have political goals, and that some of those goals benefit from the disarray that Trump creates. We don’t expect you to become an obstructionist, to alienate yourself from your party, or to abandon those who supported your campaign. To the victor go the spoils. Vote your conscience and fight for the causes you hold dear.

But we do expect you to step up and make your positions known. In fact, as your constituents, we demand it. Your unwillingness to openly engage with the citizens you represent is unacceptable, and you must change this behavior. In light of that, we expect that you will:

  • Schedule and attend in-person townhalls as requested by the Prairie Rivers Network and the East Central Illinois chapter of Action for a Better Tomorrow. The repeal of the Affordable Care Act and the completion of the Keystone and Dakota Access Pipelines both have massive impact on people in your district, and they deserve more information on your position than a tweet or a thin, two-minute floor speech can provide.
  • Schedule at least one open teleconference with your constituents per month and advertise it appropriately.
  • Schedule at least one open, in-person townhall each time Congress is in recess.
  • Publicly explain your positions on the following issues in your first teleconference:
  • President Trump’s conflicts of interest and violations of the emoluments clause, including his campaign’s ties with Russia.
  • President Trump’s executive orders on immigration.
  • President Trump’s plans for an investigation of voter fraud claims that have been thoroughly investigated and disproven and threaten to accelerate voter suppression efforts throughout the country.
  • The political review of the US EPA data and publications that is currently in place.

The president is clearly going to do his best to rule by executive order, blithe disregard for the Constitution, and sheer bluster. The Constitution and our federal laws won’t check this authoritarian behavior on their own — only Congress can. You, Rep. Davis, are our member of Congress.

Perhaps we will disagree on many of these issues. So be it. We can all respect disagreement and debate. We can not respect silence and a bunker mentality.

Make it clear where you stand on these issues, and make it clear what of President Trump’s behaviors you’re willing to take a stand against. We await your response and engagement.

Mark Allender, Champaign
Anne Anderson, Champaign
Debby M. Auble, Champaign
Colleen Aziz, Urbana
Cathy Baird, Champaign
Trish Barker, Champaign
Bill Bell, Champaign
Georgiean Benson, Monticello
Alice Berkson, Champaign
Chris Beuoy, Champaign
Dianna Black, Urbana
Dan Bodony, Urbana
Deborah Bodony, Urbana
Tim Boerner, Savoy
January Boten, Champaign
Michele Brown, Champaign
Elaine Brown, Savoy
Nicholas Brown, Savoy
Christine Canfield, Urbana
Kate Carlson, Champaign
Karen Carney, Champaign
John B. Cassel, Champaign
Rachel Chartoff, Champaign
Hsiao-Chin Chen, Champaign
Yahsin Chen, Champaign
Andrew Christensen, Champaign
Maureen Collins-Kolb, Clinton
Jessica Conroy, Champaign
Dorian Cosmedy, Urbana
Derick Cordoba, Urbana
Tanya Cordoba, Urbana
Dusty Cory, Champaign
Matthew Crapse, Mahomet
Trisha Crowley, Champaign
Kevin Cummings, Urbana
Sean Dannenfeldt, Urbana
Jason Deal, Champaign
Karen Decker, Urbana
Kirsten Dennison, Champaign
Katherine Denmead, Champaign
Tyler Denmead, Champaign
Robyn Deterring, White Heath 
Glen Dimock, Savoy
Rachel Dimock, Savoy 
Diana Dudzienski, Champaign
Jan Erkert, Champaign
Brenda Clevenger Evans, Champaign 
Steven Errede, Champaign
Jodi Fan, Mahomet
Stephen Fiol, Champaign
Cynthia Fisher, Champaign
Sheree Flannigan, Monticello
Michael Foellmer, Champaign
Barbara J. Ford, Champaign
Matthew Frank, Champaign
Terri Fredrick, Champaign
Devin Fredrickson, Urbana
Bridget Frerichs, Champaign
Jeffrey Friedman, Champaign
Charles Gammie, Champaign
Myra Gillespie, Champaign
Rebecca Ginsburg, Urbana
John Girotti, Champaign 
Robin Goettel, Urbana
Rebecca Green, Champaign
Jody Groff, Champaign
Ryann Grove, Champaign
William Guenthner, Champaign
Martha Gullo, De Land
Laura Haber, Urbana
Kelly Halcom
Elizabeth Hanauer, Champaign
Justin E. Harper, Mahomet
Amy Hassinger, Urbana
Sharon Haworth, Urbana
Amy Heggemeyer, Champaign
Beth Hogan
Sarah Hook, Champaign
Susana Hollinger
Debbie Horner, Savoy
Robert J.M. Hudson, Champaign
Barbara Hughes, Urbana
Diedre Huston, Mahomet
Sharon Irish, Urbana
Barbara M. Jones, Urbana
Scott Johnson, Champaign
Lois Kain, Urbana
Karen B. Kane, Champaign
Melody Kane, Champaign
Paula Kaufman, Champaign
Ken Keefe, Mahomet
Andrew Kerins, Champaign
Susan Klefstad, Monticello
Eileen Kohen, Urbana
Jessica D. Kopolow, Champaign
Megan Kuhlenschmidt, Champaign
Ming Kuo, Urbana
Cloydia Hill Larimore, Urbana
Brianna Lawrence, Urbana
Ben Leff, Urbana
Linda Lehovec, Philo
Ellen Leyerle, Champaign
Mike Leyerle, Champaign
Yu-Feng Lin, Champaign
Suzanne Linder, Champaign
Samantha Lindgren, Champaign
Kerrith Livengood, Champaign
Avital Livny, Urbana
Christopher Lubienski, Urbana
Sarah Lubienski, Urbana
Rachel Lutz, Champaign
Elizabeth Majerus, Urbana
Heather Mangian
Patricia Marlow, Champaign
Mike Marlow, Champaign
Jeremy Martin, Edwardsville
Jill Martin, Edwardsville
Wendy Mathewson, Urbana
Vida Mazzocco, Champaign
Andy McClure, Champaign
Julie McClure, Champaign
Rosemary McLeese, Monticello
Meaghan McGinnis, Champaign
Michael McKelvey, Champaign
Meghan Miller, Champaign
Taylor M. Mochulsky, Urbana
Chuck Moles, Springfield
Jennifer Monson, Urbana
Diana Mosher, Champaign
Rebecca Motley, Champaign
Elizabeth Murphy, Champaign
Mary Murphy, White Heath
Sean Murphy, Champaign
Doug Mynatt, Savoy
Susan L. Mynatt, Savoy
Erica Nehrling, Champaign
Rebecca Nettl-Fiol, Champaign
Patricia Nolan, Urbana
Lisa Ochoa, Tuscola
Anne Ferrer Odom, Champaign
Michael Odom, Champaign
Allison O’Dwyer, Urbana
James O’Dwyer, Urbana
Joe Omo-Osagie, Urbana
Diane Ore, Champaign
Tracy Parish, Champaign
Michele Perry, Champaign
Drew Phillips, Champaign
Elisabeth Pollock, Urbana
Renee Pollock, Urbana
Eva M. Pomerantz, Champaign
Paula Popowski, Champaign
Lisa Powers, Urbana
Keith Prather, Champaign
Kelly Prather, Champaign
Amanda Purnell, Urbana
Ann Quackenbush, Champaign
Lauren Quinn, Urbana
Halie Rando, Urbana
Jenny Hill Ravanh, Champaign
Maeve Reilly, Champaign
Michael Robson, Urbana
Michelle Rodrigues, Urbana
Jennifer Roth, Urbana
Leslie Rye, Champaign 
Steve Schmidt, Champaign
Melissa Schoeplein, Urbana
Allison Schmulbach, Champaign 
Eric Schmulbach, Champaign
Adam J. Scott, Champaign
Mary Severinghaus, Mahomet
Kathy Shannon, Champaign
Linda Sims, Champaign
Cindy Smallwood, Monticello
Adriana P. Smith
Casey Smith, Urbana
Rita M. Smith, Champaign 
Wayne Smith, Champaign
Diane L. Stensland, Urbana
Gary J. Stensland, Urbana
Tim Stephens
Phil Strang, Urbana
Jennifer Straub, Urbana
Jamie Storm, Urbana
Todd M. Sweet, Savoy
Stephanie A. Swift, Urbana
Carol Symes, Urbana
Jami Taylor, Champaign
Beverly Thomas, Champaign
Gail Tittle, Champaign
John Toenjes, Tolono
Nathan Tolbert, Champaign
Beth Van, Champaign
Mitri Van, Champaign
Pamela C. Van Wyk, Champaign
Renée Wadleigh, Urbana
Margaret Waltershausen, Urbana
Amelia Weber, Champaign
Kelley Wegeng, Urbana
Eric Westburg, Monticello
Glenn Westfield, Champaign
Elizabeth Westfield, Champaign
Kim Whittlesey, Urbana
Adam Whobrey, Urbana
Tina Whobrey, Urbana
Kirstin Wilcox, Urbana
Tom Wilson, Urbana
Allison Winter, Mahomet
Debby Winter, Champaign
Kathleen Winters, Urbana
Matthew S. Winters, Urbana
Sarah Windingland, Mahomet 
Kate Winkler, Champaign
Amy Wolff, Urbana
David Wolfmeyer, Champaign