Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis reveals in a new campaign memoir that she terminated two pregnancies for medical reasons in the 1990s, including one where the fetus had developed a severe brain abnormality. Davis writes in "Forgetting to be Afraid" that she had an abortion in 1996 after an exam revealed that the brain of the fetus had developed in complete separation on the right and left sides. She also describes ending an earlier ectopic pregnancy, in which an embryo implants outside the uterus. Davis disclosed the terminated pregnancies for the first time since her nearly 13-hour filibuster last year over a tough new Texas abortion law. Both pregnancies happened before Davis, a state senator from Fort Worth, began her political career and after she was already a mother to two young girls.
The Abbott camp highlighted this KTCK-AM radio interview in which Davis said she grew up cheering for the Cowboys and will be doing so again this year: It contrasted that statement with Vogue interview in which Davis’ daughter described her as a Patriots fan and a shot of a “Go Pats!” comment on Facebook by Davis.Elsewhere Davis actually continues to struggle:
"The ambulatory-surgical-center requirement is unconstitutional because it imposes an undue burden on the right of women throughout Texas to seek a previability abortion," Yeakel ruled, blocking enforcement of the requirement scheduled to take effect Monday. Yeakel also ordered the McAllen and El Paso areas to be exempted from a separate provision of the law requiring abortion doctors to obtain admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. He described the law, called House Bill 2, as "a brutally effective system of abortion regulation that reduces access to abortion clinics, thereby creating a statewide burden for substantial numbers of Texas women." Already, a couple dozen clinics have closed since its enactment.From the opinion:
In recent weeks, she’s toured the state touting bills she pushed in the Texas Legislature that led to rape kits being tested so victims could receive justice. Last week in Dallas, she stood with Lavinia Masters and other rape survivors. According to Davis, Masters didn’t get justice because time ran out on officials seeking to close her case. “Eliminating the statute of limitations for rape will help to right that wrong by making sure that survivors like Lavinia will never again will have to forgo justice just because someone stood back and let the clock run out on their case,” Davis said. The Davis campaign pointed to several Texas rape case where the criminals got away with the crime because of the statute of limitations.Right now in Texas, there is a ten year statute of limitations on the prosecution of felony sexual assault cases. There is no statute of limitations on the prosecution of sexual assault on a child, or in cases where DNA is recovered but no match can be found. What Davis wants to do is put felony sexual assault on the same level as crimes like murder, manslaughter, and human trafficking, the prosecution of which is not limited by statute.
Gubernatorial rivals Wendy Davis and Greg Abbott have each raised just over $11 million since late February, but the Republican attorney general retains a huge $36 million to $13 million cash advantage over the Democratic senator from Fort Worth less than four months before the election. The fundraising reports, due with the Texas Ethics Commission by midnight Tuesday, gave each of the campaigns something to crow about. For Abbott, who raised $11.1 million between Feb. 23 and June 30, it is that his $36 million campaign funds constitutes, the campaign said, “the highest cash on hand amount ever reported by a Texas candidate.” They also touted the fact that, “Greg Abbott’s fund raising is coming from Texas: 95 percent of Abbott’s contributions came from within the state.” For the underdog Davis, the numbers also represented good news. Despite not budging in the polls so far — Abbott maintains a double-digit advantage — she continues to draw from a very large fundraising base, with many times as many givers as Abbott, which the Davis campaign likes to portray as the domain of fat-cat “insiders” who see Abbott as an investment more than a cause. The Fort Worth senator’s campaign said that in this last reporting period, Davis had had raised $11.2 million from more than 72,000 contributors; that 75 percent of the contributions were for less than $50, and the average contribution was 105.25.Davis does have some well-heeled backers, though, as The Dallas Morning News reports, Wendy Davis draws from trial lawyers, labor and Hollywood to boost her campaign:
Just as Hillary Clinton supporters were unable to name a single accomplishment of the former Secretary of State, Wendy Davis’ supporters are in the same boat. A new video by Texans for Greg Abbott features an interviewer asking supporters of Davis at the 2014 Texas Democratic Convention what her greatest legislative achievements were.Here's the video: Liberals are already preparing themselves for Wendy Davis to lose.
State Sen. Wendy Davis’ campaign for governor abruptly switched gears Wednesday as it struggles to meet the high expectations that supporters have for the Fort Worth Democrat. As nationally known strategist Karin Johanson revealed that she is leaving the campaign, Davis announced that state Rep. Chris Turner — the No. 2 member of the House Democratic leadership — will lead her campaign in the final five months until Election Day. “Chris has spent nearly 20 years in Texas politics and has fought, and won, tough races in this state,” Davis said in a statement. “His commitment to the people of Texas is unparalleled and demonstrated in his service in the state Legislature.”This follows on the heels of the Davis' Communications Director leaving in early May. Even more bad news today for those still hoping Davis can mount a comeback. A new poll shows Greg Abbott maintaining a double-digit lead:
How much longer will out of state interests keep funneling money to Davis? With control of the U.S. Senate and various House seats on the line, will liberal activists keep spending good money after bad in the Texas Governor’s race.Well, that didn't take long. National Democrats are abandoning Davis' sinking ship, as reported by the L.A. Times:
If Washington was reeling on Tuesday, the vertigo may have stemmed from something rare: blunt honesty from the mouth of an elected official. Really. It occurred as Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin, head of the Democratic Governors Assn., detailed for reporters the group’s target races this year. Top tier: Maine, Pennsylvania, Florida. Second tier: Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin. Fingers crossed: South Carolina, Georgia, Kansas, Arizona. Notably absent was one of the supposed marquee races of 2014, Democrat Wendy Davis’ effort to derail Republican Greg Abbott in Texas. Shumlin sent an unmistakable signal that the moneyed organization had better places to place its dough. “We all understand Democrats haven’t won Texas in a long time,” he said, after a reporter noted that Texas had not been included among his targeted states.Davis' campaign reacted with fury, as reported by The N.Y. Daily News:
But the lack of confidence from her own party set Davis’ team off. "The uninformed opinions of a Washington, D.C., desk jockey who's never stepped foot in Texas couldn't be less relevant to what's actually happening on the ground," Karin Johanson, Davis campaign manager, said in a surprising statement after Shumlin’s slight. Johanson later clarified that the “uninformed Washington, D.C., desk jockey” was meant to describe whoever scripted the party’s talking points on the DGA’s priority campaigns.Erick Erickson is gloating, Democrats Abort Their Texas Takeover:
PPP's newest Texas poll finds Republicans leading by double digits in all of the state's major races for 2014. In the Governor's race Greg Abbott's at 51% to 37% for Wendy Davis. Those numbers are largely unchanged from our last poll of the state in early November when Abbott had a 50/35 advantage. Davis had a 39/29 favorability rating right after her famous filibuster last June, but since then voters in the state have mostly moved toward having negative opinions about her and now she's at a 33/47 spread. Davis' name recognition is actually 12 points higher than Abbott's, but his reviews break down favorably with 40% having a positive view of him to 27% with a negative one.As Logan Churchwell points out at Breitbart.com, Davis even is losing among female voters, 49-41 percent. Here are some PPP internals that Davis has a net negative favorability with women, in comparison to Abbott who has net positive favorability:
In the governor’s race, Abbott would beat Davis 47 percent to 36 percent in a general election held today, with 17 percent of registered voters saying they have not made up their minds about which candidate to support, according to the poll. “We’ve been talking since the beginning of this race about whether anything would be different, and we’re not seeing anything that’s different,” said Jim Henson, co-director of the poll and head of the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas at Austin. “There was some talk about how Davis had done better in our last poll, and that was partially an artifact of her rise in the fall, and we’re seeing something of a reassertion of the normal pattern.” In the October survey, Davis’ announcement and sudden political celebrity cut the Republican's lead over her to 6 percentage points. Now, the distance between the two has widened a bit. “The story of the last four months is, Davis loses a couple points, Abbott gains a couple of points,” said Daron Shaw, co-director of the poll and a professor of government at UT-Austin. “He had a pretty good couple of months. She had a pretty bad couple of months, all without many people paying attention.”The details are even more disheartening for Davis, as her unfavorables have grown from 31 to 35%, with a whopping 28% very unfavorable. By contrast, Abbott's unfavorables are at 25% with only 16% very unfavorable:
Davis' close ties to the group are coming back to haunt her....
Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis made her name and kick-started her campaign for governor by filibustering an anti-abortion omnibus bill, standing and talking for 11 hours straight in support of abortion rights. So it comes as a surprise — and frankly, a betrayal — to learn that Davis told the Dallas Morning News on Tuesday that she could support a ban on abortions after 20 weeks, if it gave "enough deference between a woman and her doctor" to make the decision to abort after that point for medical reasons.... You may have bought her sneakers, but when it comes down to it, Wendy Davis is a politician.Irin Carmon at MSNBC writes, Wendy Davis falls into abortion question trap:
This week, Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis delighted her detractors and confounded her pro-choice supporters when she appeared to support the very same 20-week ban she spent 11 hours filibustering..... It’s far too late for Davis to shy away from abortion rights, including the more politically uncomfortable parts, after confronting them head-on in her filibuster. Regardless of what she was trying to say, a political campaign isn’t a great place for complex or nuanced moral conversations. On the campaign trail, Davis would likely be better off if she stuck to the broader point she made in her filibuster: “The alleged reason for the bill is to enhance patient safety. But what [the provisions] really do is create provisions that treat women as though they are not capable of making their own medical decisions.”Tata Culp-Ressler at Think Progress (yes, that Think Progress) wrote, Why Wendy Davis’ Position On 20-Week Abortion Bans Doesn’t Make Any Sense:
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