Not since Wendy Davis have we seen national liberals fall so much in love with a Texan.

You remember Wendy, the wannabe Governor of Texas, who with her pink sneakers became a national sensation and fundraising juggernaut after her very public opposition to pro-life legislation.

https://www.facebook.com/WendyDavisForGovernorOfTexas#!/photo.php?fbid=254288111400314&set=pb.191561997672926.-2207520000.1390488266.&type=3&theater

We covered Wendy’s campaign extensively.

We covered the pensive Wendy.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=252666281562497&set=pb.191561997672926.-2207520000.1390442065.&type=3&theater

And the bullhorn Wendy:

http://abc13.com/politics/abbott-davis-face-off-in-gubernatorial-debate/316288/

And the awkwardly gun-toting Wendy:

Wendy Davis had everything going for her other than voters.

She was crushed in the general election.

Now comes one Robert “Beto” O’Rourke, that dreamy crush of a guy, who is ready to skateboard his way to the Senate.

Jim Geraghty at National Review calls Betomania The Beatification of Beto:

The media’s treatment of Texas Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke wasn’t the most egregiously unfair coverage of the past year — that would be the treatment of Brett Kavanaugh — but it ranks among 2018’s most annoying. The endless glowing profiles of O’Rourke in every publication from Vanity Fair to Spin to Rolling Stone to Town & Country represent the national media’s worsening challenge in differentiating between what it wants to see happen and what is actually happening….

Give O’Rourke credit for his strengths. He’s handsome and good on the stump, and uses social media in creative ways. He won his past Democratic primaries by outhustling comfortable incumbents. He genuinely doesn’t consult with pollsters when shaping his positions, which is how you end up with a Texas statewide candidate who is running on banning AR-15s, abolishing ICE, and impeaching President Trump.

But what’s fascinating is how the media looked at O’Rourke’s fairly mundane life and standard-issue national Democratic positions and convinced themselves they had found a transformational political talent.

O’Rourke kept getting labeled “Kennedyesque,” but the adjective was never applied where the comparison is most accurate, his driving record. The presence of enthusiastic supporters at O’Rourke rallies kept being cited as some sort of indicator of a sea change in the state’s politics. But attracting a crowd of supporters is not that high a bar to clear. Wendy Davis had plenty of well-attended rallies in 2014. Texas has 15 million registered voters and almost 4 million of them voted for Hillary Clinton.

O’Rourke once played in a rock band and knows how to skateboard. Big deal, a lot of guys in Generation X did that. Media headlines keep leaving the impression he’s Latino — “In Texas, Beto O’Rourke’s rise fuels hope for Latino Democrats” — and he’s not. He gets labeled an “outsider” despite being in elected office since 2005 and Congress since 2013. Even the AP noticed that he’s got an everyman image but a net worth of about $9 million.

The industry of Beto long-form profiles is becoming an internet joke:

https://twitter.com/NathanKleinDC/status/1050784573859225600

Eddie Scarry at The Washington Examiner practically begs, No more news profiles on Beto O’Rourke being ‘cool,’ please.

Like Wendy Davis, Beto has everything except voters, trailing consistently in the polls by high single digits. There was a moment in time when Republicans worried Betomania might overtake Cruz. But Beto has never held a lead in the race, and the gap appears to be widening post-Kavanaugh:

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2018/senate/tx/texas_senate_cruz_vs_orourke-6310.html

Nonetheless, Beto broke a record in the third quarter of 2018, raising $38 million for his Senate bid.

National Democrats are not happy. Beto is sucking the life out of the potential blue wave. He doesn’t need $38 million to run a first class campaign, and probably can’t even spend that much. Every excess dollar donated to McDreamy is a dollar not donated to someone in a competitive House or Senate race.

The NY Times reports on the distress, Beto O’Rourke’s War Chest Bothers Some Democrats as He Struggles Against Ted Cruz:

Representative Beto O’Rourke’s blockbuster fund-raising in his race to unseat Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is colliding with a widening deficit in polls, bringing long-simmering tensions into public view between Democrats who believe Mr. O’Rourke should share his bounty with better-positioned candidates and others who say his only obligation is to maximize his own chances.

Mr. O’Rourke announced Friday that he had raised over $38 million in the last three months alone, a staggering sum for a statewide race and the most of any Senate candidate in history. But a new poll completed Thursday night by The New York Times Upshot and Siena College indicated that Mr. Cruz now leads Mr. O’Rourke by eight percentage points, 51 percent to 43 percent, with a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.6 points….

But Mr. O’Rourke is also emerging as a small-dollar fund-raising force — one whom many supporters hope will run for president, win or lose — at the moment his party is seeing its prospects for retaking the Senate dim in the aftermath of the protracted clash over the Supreme Court nomination of Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh.

It goes beyond siphoning away dollars from other more needy candidates.

Beto also is siphoning away free media attention. There’s only so much buzz and cool the country can handle at one time, and Beto has sucked up a bunch of cool.

Beto turns back into a pumpkin on election day. A very well-financed pumpkin who then will be urged to run for president.

Losing the Texas Senate race will not dampen Beto’s national ambitions. To the contrary, even coming close will be used to build a narrative that he will sweep the blue states and be competitive in red states.

Just like Governor Wendy Davis.

[Featured Image: Beto Skateboarding at Whataburger]