Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis and her advisers have begun informing influential Democrats that she intends to run for governor in 2014, according to multiple sources familiar with Davis’s conversations.
The Fort Worth legislator made a national name for herself in June when she mounted a filibuster against new proposed abortion clinic regulations. Texas Republicans ultimately passed those restrictions into law in a special session called by outgoing Republican Gov. Rick Perry.
Davis advisers declined to confirm that she will enter the governor’s race, but Davis consultant Hector Nieto said the senator has made up her mind about 2014 and will unveil her plans next week.
“Sen. Davis has decided what she will do and she looks forward to making that announcement with her grass-roots supporters on Oct. 3,” Nieto said.
Why not run? What does she have to lose? Nothing, says Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey. Sure, she might not have the political clout to beat someone like Greg Abbott in a state like Texas, but that doesn’t really matter now does it? Ed notes that by running she can (a) raise her profile for subsequent elections (not unlike, say, what Mitt Romney did in 1994 when he lost to Teddy Kennedy in a landslide) or (b), if and when she loses, launch a career in punditry -- as failed pols are wont to do. Neither is a bad option, really. Texas, meanwhile, hasn’t elected a Democrat to the governor’s mansion since the early 1990s. So best of luck winning, Democrats, it’s not going to be easy -- especially when you’re pushing a candidate who rose to prominence by filibustering a bill that is now saving the lives of pain-capable, unborn children. That type of politics might work in Massachusetts, but probably not in Texas. On the plus side, though, Davis fans shouldn’t lose heart. She’s probably the best candidates Democrats have at this point, and if she dropped out now, even her closest confidantes admit they'd be shocked:
It would be a major shock to her closest allies if she were to reverse course before that event and opt out of the election.
Davis, 50, has trailed Abbott in early polling on the gubernatorial election, which will be the first open-seat governor’s race in Texas since 1990.
Expect her to make it official sometime next week. Until then, I suspect Texas Democrats will be watching -- and waiting -- with bated breath.