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Ducky Democrats Dog Congressman Davis

Democrat in a duck costume
Amanda Vinicky/WUIS

Political campaigns are gearing up for next year's elections. So, too, are political pranksters.

Congressman Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, has lately found himself being shadowed by a giant duck.

Technically it's a woman in a duck suit: "Uh, yes, it is very warm in the duck costume."

This is Nafia Khan. She and a handful of other activists are on the Illinois State Fairgrounds, holding signs that accuse Congressman Davis of "ducking" constituents. They say he's not holding any town hall meetings.

"(If) he wants to come back and report back to us what he's specifically doing in Congress, we'd love that, and we can engage with him further," Khan says.

Khan and a handful of others — not in costume — say they want to ask Davis why he refused to cooperate with an ethics investigation into fellow Congressman Aaron Schock, R-Peoria. This was last year, before Davis was in Congress, and he has not been charged with any ethics violations himself.

Davis spokesman Andrew Flach dismisses the duck as part of "political funny season."

"The charge that he's not available to discuss issues with constituents is completely unfair," Flach says. He acknowledges there haven't been town-hall meetings, but says Davis "holds a lot of one-on-one and small-group meetings, he attends other public events, and we hold mobile office hour stops."

The protesters are supported by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee — which is going all out to unseat Davis in next year's election.

Speaking to Republican Party leaders in Springfield last week, Davis took the duck outside as a badge of honor.

"Who else brought protesters to this event today?" he asked.

Davis, less than one year into his first term in Congress, isn't only the target of Democratic operatives. He's also facing a primary challenge from lawyer and former Miss America Erika Harold.

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