Release: Callis Campaign Condemns Davis’ Despicably Misleading Attack Ad


EDWARDSVILLE — The campaign of former Chief Judge and Congressional challenger Ann Callis condemned Congressman Rodney Davis’ despicably misleading attack ad, which distorts Callis’ exemplary judicial career to hide his terrible record in Congress.
“Judge Ann Callis had one of the most outstanding judicial careers in Madison County, which is reflected by the fact she was retained with 68% of the vote in 2012 – receiving more votes than any other candidate on the ballot – and with more 72% of the vote in 2006. Callis was selected out of hundreds of judges across the state to serve on highly selective Illinois Supreme Court Committees, including the Illinois Judicial Technology Committee; the special Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Justice and Mental Health Planning; and the E-Access Policy Group for the State. Callis has been repeatedly recommended by the Illinois State Bar Association and was named Madison County’s person of the year for her work on the bench. Even Congressman Davis’ old boss, Republican Congressman John Shimkus, has lauded Callis for her reforms and innovative programs as recently as 2012.
“This attack ad is a new low for Congressman Davis and is the sign of a campaign that continues to desperately try to distract voters from the issues and Congressman Davis’ terrible record in Congress. Knowing he can’t compete with Judge Callis on the issues, Congressman Davis is resorting to the absurd tactic of taking legal decisions out of context while ignoring that Judge Callis was affirmed by higher courts hundreds of times. Congressman Davis needs to apologize to the voters for continuing to insult their intelligence with this bogus attack strategy,” said Callis spokesman David Miyashiro.
Callis’ tenure as judge has been praised by a number of respected legal and law enforcement professionals who have seen her work firsthand:
“Chief Judge Ann Callis has earned my respect and the respect of Republicans and Democrats alike for the reforms she initiated to improve our local court system and for the innovative programs she has launched. I was so impressed by the establishment of the veterans court that helps troubled veterans get their lives back on track that I nominated the program for the national Paul H. Chapman Award from the Foundation for Improvement of Justice,” said Congressman John Shimkus (R-Collinsville) about Chief Judge Ann Callis in 2012.
“As a former Chief Judge, I can say that Ann Callis was an exceptional Judge who protected this community, earned the respect of both prosecutors and defense lawyers, and went out of her way to help veterans get care and save families from losing their homes. Anyone who says otherwise is being dishonest. I have no doubt that her work will have a positive impact on Madison County for many years to come,” said Charles Romani, retired Madison County Circuit Judge and co-founder of the Veterans Treatment Court
“Judge Callis was an extremely competent judge who earned the respect of law enforcement officers through her fair consideration of the facts and by holding criminals accountable for their actions. I’m an experienced law enforcement officer and I can tell you without hesitation that Judge Callis helped to make our streets safer,” said John Lakin, Chief of Police in Glen Carbon, Madison County.
"As a career prosecutor who has put away some of the most heinous criminals in our county, I can tell you from firsthand experience that Judge Callis has consistently been tough on convicted criminals and put the safety of this community first.  Judge Callis has a strong record of putting violent criminals and sexual predators behind bars, especially those who commit crimes against children, which is why she has earned the respect and trust of prosecutors in our area," said Jennifer Vucich, First Assistant State's Attorney and chief of the Violent Crimes Unit.
Judge Callis’ Outstanding Judicial Career:

  • Judge Callis was appointed to well-respected Supreme Court committees and was a statewide judicial leader on justice and mental health. She spearheaded judicial education seminars throughout the state and was recognized by fellow judges in Illinois for her innovative programs.
  • Her record includes lowering class action suits, ending Judge-shopping, and requiring mandatory mediation for medical malpractice suits. Her efforts led the head of the Illinois Civil Justice League to endorse her retention campaign in 2012.
  • Ed Murnane, head of the Illinois Civil Justice League, endorsed Judge Callis for her judicial retention in 2012, stating, "Callis instituted strict rules to govern judicial substitutions and admittance to out-of-state attorneys. With the addition of the federal Class Action Fairness Act, class actions have diminished from 106 in 2003 to less than five a year now.”
  • In July 2007, Callis was guest of honor at the Illinois Civil Justice League’s annual Chicago banquet. Before her speech, she received a standing ovation, and in her speech to the ICJL and insurance executives, doctors, and businesspeople, she pointed out that the improvements in Madison County were the result of a team effort amongst her 3 fellow judges—two Democrats and one Republican.
  • She was named Madison County’s person of the year in 2006 by the Madison Record for “her commitment to restoring public confidence in the Madison County Court System, her skillful reforms, as well as her impartial and fair operation of the court.”

Fact check:
Davis Claim: Ann Callis was overturned 10 times because of Callis’ mistakes.
Truth: Callis has tried thousands of cases as Judge. Rulings can be overthrown for a number of reasons, including new evidence and testimony, which is the reason we have an appeals process.
Davis Claim: Callis handed down a ruling that a higher court claimed produced “absurd results.”
Truth: The case Davis is using in his nasty attack is about a neighbor complaining about actions that "caused water to come onto the property of the plaintiffs." The Appellate Court simply lifted an injunction Judge Callis had placed. It is absurd to make a claim that this court case about water drainage makes Callis a bad judge.
Davis Claim: A murder trial was overturned because Callis misled the jury.
Truth: The "mislead" statement is taken out of context in this nasty attack by Davis. The truth is the court said there was some confusion in the instructions given to a jury, but that the statements were accurate statements of the law and only created a potential for confusion.
Davis Claim: Callis was rated the worst judge in Madison County.
Truth: This misleading charge was based on survey of lawyers nearly twenty years ago that was taken just a few weeks after Callis became a judge in Madison County. Once legal professionals and law enforcement officers were able to see her work firsthand, she was regularly recommended by the Illinois State Bar Association. Callis was retained by the public in Madison County with more than 72% of the vote in 2006 and 68% of the vote in 2012, receiving more votes than any other candidate on the ballot.