Campaign

GOP Rep. Mary Miller announces reelection bid with Trump endorsement

Rep. Mary Miller (R-Ill.) addresses reporters during a press conference on Wednesday, September 29, 2021 to introduce the Defending Students' Civil Rights Act to stop Critical Race Theory teaching in schools.
Greg Nash

GOP Rep. Mary Miller (Ill.) announced Saturday that she plans to run for another House term, launching a bid in the state’s newly drawn 15th Congressional District and waging a primary challenge to fellow Republican incumbent Rep. Rodney Davis.

Miller was essentially left without a seat after the redistricting process — controlled completely by Democrats — divided her downstate district into two, leaving her with the choice of challenging Davis in the new 15th District or Rep. Mike Bost (R) in the new 12th Congressional District. 

Both Davis and Bost are well funded and popular, but Miller, a hard-line first-term lawmaker, indicated she will run as a staunch ally of former President Trump, announcing her reelection bid along with his endorsement.

“I am blessed to start out 2022 by receiving President Donald Trump’s endorsement for my re-election in IL-15,” she tweeted. “I promise to always be a fighter for the America First Agenda. This will be the year we take our country back.” 

In his statement, Trump touted Miller as a backer of his agenda, touching on several hot-button issues for the GOP.

“Congresswoman Mary Miller is doing a fantastic job representing the people of Illinois! Strong on Election Security, the Second Amendment, and our Military and Vets, Mary is a champion of our America First agenda. She fights hard against Joe Biden’s open borders, runaway inflation, and the radical indoctrination of our children,” he said. “Mary has my Complete and Total Endorsement!” 

Davis is the only incumbent in the 15th District, which does include some of Miller’s current district. But the rest of Miller’s seat and her hometown of Oakland lie in the 12th District.

The 15th Congressional District will favor Republicans in the general election, and Miller’s entry into the race sets up a heavyweight fight in the primary.

Miller has been a staunch Trump ally since her election in 2020 and is a member of the hard-line House Freedom Caucus. She became a top target of Illinois Democrats in early January 2021 after comments critics said praised Adolf Hitler.

Miller cautioned that Republicans would lose unless “we win the hearts and minds of our children. This is the battle. Hitler was right on one thing. He said, ‘Whoever has the youth has the future.’”

Miller later apologized “for any harm my words caused” and said she “[regrets] using a reference to one of the most evil dictators in history.”

Davis, meanwhile, has supported Trump in recent years but broke from him at times, including crossing the former president and House GOP leadership in voting to create a panel to investigate the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.

Davis was rumored to be considering a gubernatorial challenge to Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) this year but announced in November he would run for another House term instead, rolling out endorsements from 31 of the 35 GOP county chairmen in the new district as well as Bost and Rep. Darin LaHood (R-Ill.).

Should the GOP win the House this year, as anticipated, and Davis win his race, he would be poised to chair the House Administration Committee and helm the House Transportation and Infrastructure Highway and Transit Subcommittee.

“Democrats in Washington have put our nation in crisis with their big government, socialist schemes and dreams,” Davis said in November. “Republicans are primed to retake the House next year, and I’m ready to work with a new Republican majority to finally fire Nancy Pelosi and hold the Biden Administration accountable for their massive failures.”

Tags Darin LaHood Donald Trump incumbent-on-incumbent primary Joe Biden Mary Miller Mike Bost Nancy Pelosi Republican Party Rodney Davis Trump endorsement

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