Wendy Davis Stubs Her Political Toe on Discrepancies in Her Bio

Image: Wendy Davis Stubs Her Political Toe on Discrepancies in Her Bio

Tuesday, 21 Jan 2014 10:19 AM

By Michael Mullins

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Wendy Davis, the Texas Democratic state senator who is running in the Lone Star state’s upcoming gubernatorial race, has some apparent discrepancies in her bio which details her rise from being a teenage single mother living in a trailer park to graduating from Harvard Law School.

On Monday, the 50-year-old Davis responded to critics who in recent days have pointed out that her history was not as inspirational as suggested, by dismissing them as a baseless personal attack.

First elected to statewide office in 1994, the Democratic gubernatorial hopeful rose to fame last summer when she attempted to filibuster abortion limits in the Texas State Senate. The act has since reportedly allowed her to raise a substantial amount of money which she has put towards her race against Republican Texas’ Attorney General Greg Abbott.

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Davis has long said she first took a job at 14 to help support her single mother and three siblings in Fort Worth. By 19, she was divorced with a child of her own and living in a mobile home, The Associated Press reported.

On Sunday, the Dallas Morning News reported that Davis was in fact 21, not 19 as stated in her online Texas Senate biography, when her first marriage ended in divorce, and that she and her daughter Amber lived only a few months in her family's mobile home.

In response to the inconsistencies, Davis told the paper: "My language should be tighter. I'm learning about using broader, looser language. I need to be more focused on the detail."

On Monday, Davis released a statement via her campaign that read: "the truth is that at age 19, I was a teenage mother living alone with my daughter in a trailer and struggling to keep us afloat on my way to a divorce." Davis further clarified that she didn't officially file for divorce until age 20 and that it wasn't finalized until the following year, the AP noted.

Davis didn't address how long she and Amber lived in a trailer and blamed her opponent Abbott for raising questions about her past.

"We're not surprised by Greg Abbott's campaign attacks on the personal story of my life as a single mother who worked hard to get ahead," she said. "But they won't work, because my story is the story of millions of Texas women who know the strength it takes when you're young, alone and a mother."

Abbott campaign spokesman Matt Hirsch countered in his own statement Monday that Davis had "systematically, intentionally and repeatedly deceived Texans for years about her background, yet she expects voters to indulge her fanciful narrative."

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In its revealing report, the Dallas Morning News also noted that Davis’ second husband, attorney Jeff Davis, financially assisted the state senator with furthering her education and raising the couple’s two daughters.

The couple divorced in 2005 and the husband won parental custody to both children, the paper reported, with the state senator being ordered to pay child support.

According to Real Clear Politics, Abbott currently leads Davis by nearly 10 percent in the polls.

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