Tea Party Activist Konni Burton Eyes Wendy Davis' Seat

Image: Tea Party Activist Konni Burton Eyes Wendy Davis' Seat Texas state Senate candidate Konni Burton, center, stands with Rafael Cruz, left, and his son U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014 10:44 PM

By Cathy Burke

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The state Senate seat Democrat Wendy Davis is vacating so she can run for Texas governor could wind up filled by her political polar opposite: tea party activist Konni Burton.

Burton snagged 60 percent of the vote in the Republican primary runoff with former state Rep. Mark Shelton, later telling supporters: "Obviously our message of conservative principles is resonating with voters," the Star-Telegram reports.

She'll face Democratic nominee Libby Willis in November to represent a Republican-leaning district that includes Arlington and Fort Worth.

The Washington Examiner notes that Davis' two terms were an aberration for the district, which elected Republicans in each of the six elections prior to her 2008 upset.

Even Davis' narrow victory over the incumbent then came because a Liberatarian candidate fractured the vote, the Examiner reports.

A Burton victory in November, coupled with a likely Davis defeat by Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott — she's down by double digits in polls, trailing even with women
— would cap a disastrous gubernatorial campaign for Davis, who shot into the national spotlight with her filibuster against a Texas anti-abortion bill.

Even the Democratic Governors Association lost faith, opting not to include Texas on a list of target races for 2014.

As for Burton, her campaign website describes her "first and foremost" as "a wife, a mom, and a lifelong Christian" while her tea party activism snagged an endorsement from Sen. Ted Cruz.

She's also pro-life, in stark contrast to Davis' famously pro-choice stance.

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