Bill Murchison
The governorship of Texas is getting like the governorship of New York and California: a venue for spotting political trends and up-and-coming national leaders. Which helps explain all the media oooh-la-la-ing over Wendy Davis' bid to become the next Rick Perry -- colored blue instead of red.

Could Texas, under the witching spell of a future Davis administration, turn from gun-toting, business-loving, Bible-quoting conservatism to cuddly, hand-in-someone-else's-pocket liberalism?

Well, since you ask -- no. First, It would take a real -- not just a suppositious -- Gov. Davis to initiate, far less effect, such a notable change. I'm afraid, boys, that ain't going to happen this go-round. State Sen. Davis, who filibustered her way into liberal media hearts everywhere, trying to block an abortion bill she pronounced too stringent, enjoys slightly better odds of winning the governorship of Texas than might be accorded an armadillo lumbering across an interstate highway during rush hour.

Either Atty. Gen. Greg Abbott or former Texas Workforce Commission Chairman Tom Pauken -- both are vying for the Republican gubernatorial nomination -- will beat Sen. Davis with minimal trouble. She's a liberal in a conservative state, identified -- thanks to the filibuster that made her a candidate -- with the cause of keeping abortion restrictions as loose as possible.

Running for the right to run Colorado or Missouri or Rhode Island, Sen. Davis would find the odds against her far less burdensome. Naturally in any such race, she would face strong competition from the numerous Democrats already implanted there. In Texas -- not so much. No other Texas Democrat -- new style, as distinguished from Democrats of the old Preston Smith-John Connally order, 40 to 50 years ago -- appears to covet the job or the effort to obtain it, anyway.

Not even Texas' stultifying liberal press corps appears to give Davis much of a chance -- preferring to talk of the coming of the kingdom, when white conservatives (the rascals, the rednecks!) find themselves outnumbered by angry black and Hispanic Democrats. While we wait to see how that plays out, we might consider some of the reasons Sen. Davis is setting herself up for political vacation time.

Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
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