With less than 15 days to go until early voting begins, statewide candidates in Texas are running a full court press against not only the agendas of their opponents, but against umbrella strategies from national party organizations and advocacy groups.
The gubernatorial contest between state Senator Wendy Davis and Attorney General Greg Abbott is arguably the most high profile of the top-ticket races, and pollsters are busy keeping up with a race that has slowly tightened since the primary.
From the Wall Street Journal:
A poll released Wednesday by the Texas Lyceum, a nonpartisan public-policy group, showed Ms. Davis nine percentage points behind Mr. Abbott. The Rasmussen Reports, meanwhile, released a poll Friday showing Mr. Abbott 11 points ahead.
“Turnout in nonpresidential election years is always lower, and Texas voters just don’t seem interested in politics this year,” Mr. Riddlesperger said.
Ms. Davis hasn’t emphasized abortion in the campaign, largely focusing on other issues, such as increasing public-education funding and expanding health coverage. She has portrayed Mr. Abbott as beholden to moneyed, corporate interests. Mr. Abbott, in turn, has said he would work to secure the border against illegal immigration—a key concern in the state—and he has tried to link Ms. Davis, whenever possible, to President Barack Obama.
This graph from HuffPost Pollster presents a combined representation of all polling data concerning the gubernatorial race:
Note that while Davis has made inroads with Texas voters, she’s still at a 9 point spread (more or less) with less than 30 days to go until Election Day. Considering Davis’s formidable ground game, media attention, and relative celebrity, it should be much closer.
The reason Wendy Davis will lose this race has less to do with her comparative cash deficit—Abbott has $30 million on hand, Davis has less than half—and more to do with the fact that, try as she may to distance herself from her radical stance on late term abortion, she will forever be labeled as the One Who Filibustered for Abortion Rights. If not even Davis’s supporters are able to name even one of her other legislative accomplishments, what does this say about the uphill battle Davis has with moderates, independents, and voters who don’t tend to get involved in non-presidential races, and don’t vote based on pro-life issues?
Right now, Davis has less than a month to build, market, and win credibility on issues that voters actually care about: education, jobs and the economy, and spending and the debt. Barring some sort of electoral miracle, this won’t happen, largely because the base’s support of Davis has historically ebbed and flowed based on her positions on issues generally known to make the left lose its hivemind.
On November 5, the Davis for Governor campaign will stand as evidence that all the organization and media attention in the world can’t save a candidate that average voters don’t identify with and can’t bring themselves to believe in.DONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.