In re Wendy Davis’ primary

The Texas Tribune reports on a growing cause for concern among Democrats statewide, Wendy Davis’ lackluster primary finish. State Senator Davis (D-Forth Worth), now officially the Democratic nominee for Governor, had a somewhat disappointing finish in the Democratic primary. She faced an individual named Ray Madrigal, who is a Municipal Judge in the Corpus Christi suburb of Seadrift, who spent $0 and engaged in absolutely no campaigning. However, somehow, Madrigal not only racked up over 20% of the vote, he won 25 counties (tied in 2 others), with nearly all of them being Hispanic majority counties.

Perhaps you should read that again: a perennial candidate with no experience and no serious outreach program soundly defeated Wendy Davis in the most strongly Democratic portion of the State purely on the basis of having a Hispanic surname. I make the distinction about Madrigal’s non-campaign because it has relevance when one compares this primary victory with Greg Abbott’s or Bill White’s. Abbott’s opponents engaged in campaigning; indeed, all three of them had campaign websites and one even submitted a Texpatriate Questionnaire. And yet, all put together, the three opponents conjured up less than half the vote-percentage as Davis’ non-opponent.

Click here to see the charts put together on this subject!

Guv update 10/7

Once again, most of the State press corps followed Wendy Davis today as she made all the news in the gubernatorial election.

First, the Texas Tribune reports on Wendy Davis’ first web commercial, which was released today. The ad, which is just over 4 minutes and 30 seconds long, catalogs Davis’ life story, as well as some of her basic accomplishments. Davis’ story, a poor single mother who rose from Community College to TCU to Harvard Law School, eventually culminating in a career of public service on the Fort Worth City Council and Texas Senate, is a ubiquitous feature of any political discussion in today’s time. The discussion of her origins, which included a brief interview with her daughter Amber, The ad then chronicles her success in offsetting many of the recent education cuts, as well as her fights to end the backlog of rape kits. The entire ad was narrated by Davis, and overlaid with a montage of Texas images and clips. One, whose subtly was not lost on me, was an American Airlines jet taking off, a possible reference to the merger issue.

What has missing from the ad, however, was any mention of Davis’ epic filibuster or the abortion issue. It is still very early in the campaign, so I am not yet concerned, but I believe there is something to be said on this topic. Bill White ran as weak moderate; a man more wise than me at the State Convention last year called it “weak Republican syndrome.” It did not work out well for him, but Davis is different, that is what makes her campaign all the more inspiring.

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