The Grid's Preston: Texas Voters Still Filibustering Wendy Davis

Thursday, 26 Jun 2014 10:56 PM

By Sean Piccoli

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One year after her famous filibuster of a Texas abortion bill, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis remains well behind her Republican rival in the polls, Texas political journalist Bryan Preston told Newsmax TV on Thursday.

"She's been campaigning around this state for a year and she hasn't gained any traction," Preston, editor in chief of PJ Media's politics portal, The Grid, told "MidPoint" host Ed Berliner.

Davis, who is a Texas state senator, tried to capitalize on Wednesday's one-year anniversary of the filibuster that launched her to national political stardom (but failed to stop a bill outlawing abortion in Texas after 20 weeks). She held a filibuster anniversary party in Austin that was simulcast to 200 watch parties around the state.

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Preston called them "abortion parties" and said the spectacle of the main party opening with a prayer for Davis' flagging campaign was "kind of disgusting, to be honest with you."

Some political observers said the event was an effort to recapture the energy and excitement that surrounded Davis last year. Preston noted that in polling, Davis remains 12 points behind State Attorney General Greg Abbott, the Republican nominee for governor.

Davis hasn't helped her cause by her handling of the urgent issue of border security, said Preston.

With Central American illegal immigrants pouring into Texas, overwhelming state and local officials, GOP lawmakers led the way in calling for an emergency session of the Texas legislature to deal with the problem.

Davis joined the chorus on Monday and was promptly called out by Texas Republicans as an opportunist who had previously shown no interest in the issue.

Preston called it a "flip- flop on border security" for Davis and another reason Texas voters are "figuring out they can't really trust her."

Preston also talked with Berliner on Thursday about a more established Democrat: Rep. Charlie Rangel of New York, who just won his 23rd consecutive congressional primary and, in all likelihood, another term in Congress for his overwhelmingly Democratic district.

Preston said Rangel winning yet again, despite being censured by the House for ethics violations in 2010, proves "the power of incumbency is hard to overcome."

Preston said Rangel's repeated insults to Republicans — this week he said tea-party activists "all come from slave-holding states" — show he's not a serious person but they don't hurt him with his base.

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