Wendy Davis Can Beat Greg Abbott By Turning Out Obama Voters

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Yes, that’s right, despite the GOP’s attempt to tie Wendy Davis to Barack Obama he has gotten more votes in the Lone Star State than Greg Abbott ever has — and if Wendy can replicate that effort she will win.

turnout chart

Fortunately for her, the early numbers indicate folks across the state are headed to the voting booth in unprecedented numbers for a midterm election. Polls continue to show a significant lead for Greg Abbott, but that should be no surprise to anyone who understands the nature of polling “likely voters.”

If only likely voters cast a ballot the trend of GOP dominance will continue, but changing the math was always the plan for Wendy Davis’ campaign and it was the entire inspiration behind the launch of Battleground Texas.

Texas Democrats have experienced setbacks that will hinder their turnout including some 600,000 Texas residents who lack the proper form of identification required by the nation’s strictest Voter ID bill that was passed by the GOP legislature, defended in court by Attorney General Greg Abbott and recently upheld by the US Supreme Court.

Those impediments haven’t prevented progressive organizations from increasing voter roles across the state or from completing the circle by getting those unlikely and first time voters to ballot box.

Major newspaper headlines across the state touted the increase in turnout that is being experienced in the state’s major population centers, that contain a higher percentage of Democratic voters. Many of those same newspapers endorsed the top of the Democratic Ticket, and every major paper endorsed Sam Houston to replace Attorney General Greg Abbott.

Progress Texas reported over a month ago that these unlikely voters were particularly interested in this race and were motivated by issues Democrats have been championing throughout this election cycle. These low propensity or “drop off” voters include women, Hispanics, African Americans and young people. Of the respondents, 51% rated their level of interest in this election as a 10 out of 10, 74% gave a score of 8-10, and a total of only 7% gave just a 4 or less.

  “And if you can change turnout, you can change the outcome.” – Progress Texas Executive Director Ed Espinoza

These are the same people that Barack Obama was able to rally to the polls in 2008 and again in 2012. Ironically, or not, GOP’s statewide candidates continue to campaign against the termed out President and are using his party ID to tie him to Wendy Davis and rally their base. Reporters continue to ask Davis if she would accept the endorsement of the President but here is an important fact to remember – Barack Obama received more votes in Texas than Greg Abbott has in any previous election.

In 2012 Obama received 3.3 million votes compared to Abbott’s 2010 number of 3.1 million votes. So should Wendy welcome the support of Obama? Well she welcomed the campaign ad by Michelle Obama and the help of former Obama operatives of Battleground Texas, both of which are targeting the same voters that gave Obama his win in crucial battleground states across the country.

It’s time for Democratic candidates to stop pretending to be less scary Republicans and give something for Democratic voters to get excited about supporting, and judging by the numbers so far that’s exactly what Wendy is doing.

Follow me on Twitter at @joethepleb.


About Author

Joe Deshotel

Joe was born and raised in Beaumont, Tx, but live music and politics brought him to Austin. He has worked in and around government and elections for over a decade including for a member of US Congress, the Texas Legislature, the Mayor of Austin. He currently serves as Communications Director for the Travis County Democratic Party. He is most interested in transportation, energy and technology issues. He also likes Texas Hold'em and commuting on his electric skateboard. Follow me on Twitter at @joethepleb.

1 Comment

  1. Ab-BUTT needs to be booted out of Texas, along with the CROOKED Rick the DICK Perry and the rest of the republicons!


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